|Showcasing State Arts Agency Ingenuity|
Missouri's Libraries Become Cultural Centers
The Missouri Arts Council (MAC) is promoting model programs in which local libraries are broadening access to the arts for Missouri citizens. Through its newsletter and website, MAC is highlighting innovative library programs that build audiences for both libraries and the arts while fostering community literacy and strengthening relationships between libraries and artists. The model programs take many forms: permanent and temporary art exhibits, movie nights, plays, live music, author and artist talks, youth art contests, and living history enactments. (Not to mention the occasional mini-golf event!) Many of these programs provide arts participation opportunities in neighborhoods and rural areas with limited access to other cultural venues. By promoting model programs such as these, the Missouri Arts Council hopes to encourage accessibility to the arts in communities of all sizes and to increase awareness of the arts as a normal part of daily life. Find out more from MAC Public Information Coordinator Barbara MacRobie.
Business Development Workshop for Vermont Artists
Breaking into Business is a two-day artist training workshop offered by the Vermont Arts Council (VAC). The goal of the program is to help artists develop business and/or marketing plans to capitalize on their creative practices. In addition to sharing planning techniques, the workshops emphasize practical business management skills such as budgeting, hiring and use of technology. VAC is collaborating with Maren Brown and Dee Boyle-Clapp to lead the workshops, which are supported by Ernst & Young and the Vermont Community Foundation. Artists attending Breaking into Business may apply for VAC Business Incentive Grants. These awards are available to workshop participants who successfully create a business and/or marketing plan and who commit to attending a follow-up meeting. Up to $500 per grant is awarded on a competitive basis. For more information on the program, contact VAC Artist & Community Services Manager Sonia Rae.
Economic Impact of the Arts in Texas
In December, the Texas Cultural Trust published a report quantifying the economic impact of the state's creative sector, its arts and culture industries, and its cultural tourism. Update 2012: The Impact of Arts and Culture Industries on the Texas Economy is the latest addition to a suite of materials—shared with state arts agencies at an Assembly 2010 briefing session—documenting how the creative industries contribute to social and economic well-being. The new study reports that Texas's creative sector employs about 680,000 people, yielding more than $49.5 billion in wages and $4.3 billion in tax revenue. The arts and culture industries, meanwhile, generate $4.6 billion in taxable sales. Arts-related tourism supports 21,000 jobs and generates $158.5 million in tax revenue.
The Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA) welcomes the new economic impact data and will use it in a number of ways. Such information supports TCA's communications with legislators and constituents, its strategic planning process, and its application for NEA partnership funds. To learn more about how TCA uses economic impact data, contact TCA Deputy Director Jim Bob McMillan.