September 2020
In these lingering days of summer, as your eyes burn from the smoke of wildfires or tire from Zoom fatigue, it's still worth looking. There is still art.

ARTS brief is designed to intrigue you while sharing useful information, events, happenings, and current news related to arts growth in our region. If you love what you see here, please forward this to your friends and encourage them to join our email list and subscribe.
Art at the Quinn
It is always great when businesses support art by commissioning works as part of their building renovation or development. The former J.C. Penney building in downtown Vancouver has undergone a thorough renovation, bringing new vitality to Main Street. Be sure to walk by and see the new installation by glass artist Andrew Lueck.

View a slide show and read this story by Sharon Svec describing how the collaborative efforts of artist Anne John and Cascadia Development Partners led to this wonderful new addition to the downtown streetscape. 
COVID-19 relief delivered!
Just a few weeks ago, Artstra distributed relief funds to Clark County Open Studios artists who were economically impacted by the loss of arts-related income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. $10,000 in Vancouver cultural grant money, originally awarded to Artstra in support of the fall 2020 tour, was thankfully redirected by the City as COVID relief.

Back in May, Artstra made the difficult but necessary decision to cancel the 2020 Clark County Open Studios Tour. We knew this decision would make the year even harder for many artists in our community who make their living selling their art. So the prospect of some kind of economic relief was more than welcome.

During the 2019 Open Studios tour, visitors spent more than $93,000 on art and our expectation was that artists' revenues in 2020 would be even higher. The response from artists who have benefited from this modest COVID-19 relief fund has been gratifying. Here is what one artist said:
"It has been a long haul for everyone and though I am back to work, I am only working at about 25% so [this funding] is appreciated more than I can say. Thank you and the Artstra board for this and for all the work you put into keeping art in the hearts and minds of Vancouver and Clark County. Your efforts and results are one of the many wonderful things we have living here."
Poetry Moves Update

Watch for new poems on C-Tran buses in October. With Season 10 of Poetry Moves postponed due to COVID-19, we've invited ten poets to write a poem for the upcoming season. We'll share more about this in the October issue of ARTS brief
Arts Commission Openings

There are currently six open seats on the Clark County Arts CommissionCurrent openings are for cities of Camas, LaCenter, Vancouver, Washougal and Woodland. Also open is an at-large commissioner that represents business.

Contact the Clark County Arts Commission for more information.
View their Facebook page
Artists Sunday: 11/29

Artstra is happy to announce our participation this holiday season in the national effort to encourage the purchase of art directly from artists. We all know about Black Friday or Cyber Monday. This year, November 29 has been designated as Artists Sunday. Please check out the Artists Sunday website and participate in any way you can.
Vancouver Symphony
Orchestra celebrates its 30th anniversary

Congratulations to Maestro Brotons and the musicians who bring wonderful live music to our community. Although we can listen to rebroadcasts until the auditorium opens again, it is very important that we all support the VSO now. Join the VSO on their virtual celebration of 30 years with Salvador Brotons! Learn more here.
Mark your calendar for 9/24: Give More 24!
Amplify the arts!

Please mark your calendar, set an alert, watch your email, and follow social media for southwest Washington's largest day of giving. Give More 24! amplifies the work of local nonprofits by tapping the generosity of the greater community. This year it's even more important to help in any way you can.

With the COVID-19 pandemic, sadly we had to cancel both our annual summer fundraiser and our Open Studios tour. But Artstra is still here and needs your help in advocating for the arts in our community.

Our Poetry Moves program is moving ahead with poets offering poems for our first Poetry Moves Invitational with each poet receiving a small honorarium. Our work continues, And with everyone helping out in small ways, we can keep our community art friendly and arts proud! 

Thanks so much for all your support. 

Artist resources during the COVID-19 pandemic
Our all-volunteer organization works toward building greater arts awareness, rewarding creative excellence, and expanding arts accessibility. We are working to facilitate long-term arts development for Southwest Washington. We envision a stronger arts infrastructure that includes an art center and a community-focused performing arts facility. 

Your support will help to make this vision a reality. Artstra's current programs include our annual Clark County Open Studios Tour and Poetry Moves, a collaborative effort that features the words of local poets on C-Tran buses. Both of these programs have already demonstrated the power of art in our lives to connect us, transform us, and fuel the economy.
Five ways to support the cause
If you love what Artstra is doing for our community, please consider the different ways that you can contribute.

1- Donate
Use PayPal to make a tax-deductible donation to Artstra. 
2- Declutter
Give useable items to Nifty and Thrifty at 6607 E. Mill Plain Blvd. And when those items sell, the money is split 50/50 with participating nonprofits. Just let them know your items are donated to benefit Artstra. 
3- Shop 
Link your Fred Meyer Rewards Card to Artstra using our code #84120. Just by using your rewards card number, and at no cost to you, every time you shop you'll help Artstra earn a quarterly donation from Fred Meyer.
4- Shop online 
Use this link to login to Amazon, and they will donate a portion of the proceeds from your purchase back to Artstra.
5- Volunteer 
Artstra is an all-volunteer organization. If you have specialized skills, especially in fundraising, outreach and marketing, we'd love to talk with you.
ARTS brief team
Cam Suttles, editor, designer 
Jackie Genis, contributing writer
Editorial Policy and submission guidelines
ARTS brief is intended to be useful to readers by offering a curated selection of stories and announcements related to the growth of arts in our region. Submitted items should be newsworthy. This means that arts-related items for content consideration must perform well in at least two of the following five areas: timing, significance, proximity, prominence, and human interest. Please submit materials to artsbrief@artstra.orgno later than the 25th of each month. Note that submission does not guarantee publication. We evaluate each submission to determine how it fits our goals for ARTS brief and whether the item under consideration aligns with the mission and vision of Artstra. We do not accept materials that primarily have a commercial objective.
About Artstra
Artstra is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization advocating for the arts in Clark County and southwest Washington. We envision a vibrant arts economy in our region, north of the Columbia River, with public/private investments and facilities that sustain artists and enrich community. Our mission is to elevate the arts, build greater arts awareness, reward creative excellence, and expand arts accessibility.