The Wallace Foundation has announced that it has selected eighteen arts organizations of color to participate in the inaugural phase of a five-year $100 million arts initiative. As part of the effort by the foundation to spur equitable improvements in the arts, each organization will receive between $900,000 and $3.75 million to develop a project engaging with the surrounding community and addressing a “challenge they are facing.” The money will be distributed across five years.
“Historically, arts organizations created by and for communities of color have been overlooked and underfunded,” said Bahia Ramos, director of arts at Wallace. “We hope to support their vision, elevate their contributions, and learn with them in ways that benefit other arts organizations of color along with a broad range of other nonprofit arts organizations interested in how community orientation can contribute to an organization’s relevance and resilience.”
The grantees were chosen from among more than 250 applicants and represent a diverse range of practices, communities, and geographic locations. Among the themes taken up by the funding recipients are succession planning; the development of equity-centered practices; the development of business models whose values align with those of a given community; how to increase visibility; and the creation of cultural spaces that foster creativity in a community.
Among the funding recipients are the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, which is the sole arts institution in the United States devoted to documenting the Arab American experience; Oakland, California’s EastSide Arts Alliance, Black Cultural Zone, and Artist As First Responder, which work to support artists of color; and the Union for Contemporary Art in Omaha, Nebraska, which seeks to create social change through art, catalyzing the surrounding the community. The full list of grantees is below.
1Hood Media (Pittsburgh)
Arab American National Museum (Dearborn, MI)
Chicago Sinfonietta (Chicago)
EastSide Arts Alliance, Black Cultural Zone, and Artist As First Responder (Oakland, CA)
Esperanza Peace and Justice Center (San Antonio)
Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture (Charlotte, NC)
Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
PHILADANCO! The Philadelphia Dance Company (Philadelphia)
Pillsbury House + Theatre (Minneapolis)
Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater (Manhattan and Bronx, NY)
Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project (San Francisco)
Ragamala Dance Company (Minneapolis)
Rebuild Foundation (Chicago)
Self Help Graphics & Art (Los Angeles)
Theater Mu (Saint Paul, MN)
The Laundromat Project (Brooklyn, NY)
The Union for Contemporary Art (Omaha, NE)