January 2015
A Message from Our Executive Director
On Friday, January 16, Governor Doug Ducey released his proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2016. The proposed budget includes neither a General Fund appropriation for the Arizona Commission on the Arts nor an allocation derived from the interest accrued on the State's Rainy Day Fund. 

An additional allocation of $1 million derived from the Rainy Day Fund's interest was passed with broad bi-partisan support in both the house and senate for inclusion in the State's budget for Fiscal Years 2014 and 2015. Designated for statewide grantmaking, these allocations significantly increased the Arts Commission's capacity to invest in Arizona's arts sector and provided for the creation of innovative special initiatives, including Arizona Art Tank, Community Catalyst and Strengthening Schools through Arts Partnerships

As an economic driver, the arts create jobs, attract new investment and provide focal points for cultural tourism. Arts institutions and programs provide venues for communities to gather together, exchange ideas and share experiences. Artists and arts organizations assist our schools in providing a comprehensive and well-balanced education for our young people, preparing them to enter the workforce with the creative, entrepreneurial, problem solving skills that are in demand in today's workplace. 

The budget for the arts in Arizona should be expanding not contracting. Still, I see the Governor's proposal as the beginning of a conversation, not the final word. I am greatly interested in how this conversation will proceed in our legislature, where discourse between the two parties often leads to innovative alternative approaches. 

I also look forward to hearing from you, Arizona's citizens, as you add your voice to this conversation, sharing the stories of the impact the arts have had on your life, in your community and on your local economy. Next week offers an excellent opportunity to enter the conversation. 

If you haven't already done so, I invite you to register for Arts Congress, the annual arts advocacy event hosted by our friends at Arizona Citizens for the Arts. Know that despite the current fiscal obstacles our industry faces, we are dedicated to supporting your work in the arts - and with your help, we will continue to imagine an Arizona where everyone can participate in and experience the arts wherever they live. 

Robert C. Booker 
Executive Director 
Arizona Commission on the Arts

Arts Congress: Tuesday, February 3
Arts Congress, the annual arts advocacy day organized by our friends at Arizona Citizens for the Arts (AzCA), will be held on Tuesday, February 3, 2015 on the Senate Lawn of the Arizona State Capitol..

Registration begins at 8:30am and program activities will run until 2pm. 

All attendees will receive training and materials for their one-on-one meeting with their legislator(s). AzCA will set up the meeting and provide you with talking points.

Free Audience Development Workshop with Matt Lehrman
The Arizona Commission on the Arts is partnering with Audience Avenue to bring Matt Lehrman's Audiences Everywhere™ workshop to Phoenix and Tucson in February 2015.  Intended for nonprofit arts organizations large and small, Audiences Everywhere's whole-organization approach to understanding your audience promises to "blow away conventional wisdom, energize new ways to advance your mission and inspire innovation at every level of your organization."

Tucson, AZ
February 10, 2015, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
Arizona Theatre Company Cabaret,
Temple of Music and Art
Phoenix, AZ
February 11, 2015, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Singer Hall,
Phoenix Art Museum

Sonoran Strange: Wednesday, February 11
The Arizona Commission on the Arts has partnered with Performance in the Borderlands and event sponsor AZ Humanities to present an evening of poetry and performance at The Icehouse in Phoenix on February 11. 

Tucson poet and 2012 Artist Project Grant recipient Logan Phillips will read from his debut full-length poetry collection "Sonoran Strange," an exploration of the deep contradictions of the landscape and culture of his homeland. 

In addition to performances by musician Gabriel Sullivan of Chicha Dust and dancer Liliana Gomez, Arizona's Poet Laureate Alberto R�os will make a special appearance with a reading of his own award-winning work. 

Canyon Movement Company
ProMusica Arizona
Professional Development Grants
Deadline to Apply: Thursday, February 5 
The Arts Commission provides assistance to individual artists through Professional Development Grants. Professional Development Grants provide funding support for participation in artistic development and skills building activities or opportunities that contribute to professional growth and career development. 
Click here to learn more

Grants to Organizations & Schools: Guidelines now Available
Grant guidelines for Community Investment Grants, Arts Learning Grants and Festival Grants are now available for download. While applications will not be accepted until February, the Arts Commission encourages prospective applicants to review the guidelines and begin preparing their application materials as early as possible.
Click here to learn more

Grant Information Sessions
The Arts Commission will present in-person and online information sessions in the weeks leading up to the March 19 application deadline for Community Investment Grants, Arts Learning Grants (Cycle A) and Festival Grants.
Tucson: February 10, 12:00-12:30 PM
Phoenix: February 11, 12:15-12:45 PM
Online: February 18, time to be determined
Online: March 5, time to be determined.
Click here to learn more

National Nonprofit Survey
Nonprofit Finance Fund (nff.org) is conducting its seventh annual nationwide survey examining the state of the nonprofit sector to collect data on challenges and trends among nonprofits. We support the survey because NFF is committed to putting the data in service to change and shares the results openly across our communities. Please take the survey and share it with other nonprofits in your network.
Click here to take the survey

Arizona Art Tank: 2015
Between January 12 and January 20, 2015, the Arizona Commission on the Arts invested $115,000 in 16 arts-based ventures through the second year of its fast-pitch grant program, Arizona Art Tank. At regional events held in four Arizona cities, artists and nonprofit arts organizations were given 6 minutes each to pitch an innovative project or program to a live audience and a panel of experts.
New Report on Arts & Culture Spending
The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) with the National Endowment for the Arts released a report today measuring the arts and culture sector's contributions to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), for the second year in a row. This year's report finds the arts and culture sector representing 4.32 percent of the GDP - a higher percentage than transportation and construction - at $698.7 billion.
 Click here to learn more

2015 Native Arts and Culture Foundation Fellowship
The grants are given in quantities of up to $20,000 per artist. Awards will be made in six disciplines, performing arts, film making, literature, music, traditional arts, and visual arts.

Creative Writing Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts
The NEA Literature Fellowships program offers $25,000 grants in prose (fiction and creative nonfiction) and poetry to published creative writers that enable the recipients to set aside time for writing, research, travel, and general career advancement.
TourWest 2015-2016 grant program
TourWest is a competitive grant program that provides subsidies to arts and community organizations for the presentation of out-of-state touring performers and literary artists. Funds are available to organizations that sponsor performances within the 13-state WESTAF region. 
Important Dates

Feb 3 - Arts Congress (Arizona State Capitol)

Feb 14Poetry Out Loud, Southern Regional Finals (UA Poetry Center, Tucson)

Feb 16 - Presidents Day (Office Closed)


Click here to view the calendar of events
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