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Monograph: Effective Community Arts Development: Fifty Years, Fifty Tips

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The first local arts agencies started in the late 1940s and led to the creation of Community Arts Councils, Inc. (CACI) in Winston-Salem, NC, 50 years ago. CACI is the ancestor of today’s Americans for the Arts and as we look ahead to our 50th anniversary in 2010, we want to take this occasion to reflect upon effective arts development as we celebrate this movement that has grown from about 400 local arts agencies in 1960 to an estimated 5,000 today. The local arts agency (LAA) movement has had a lasting, indelible impact on the arts in America.
Local arts agencies are a growing presence in communities across the country. Each provides vital services to sustain its local arts industry, and endeavors to make the arts accessible to every member of the community. As such, each LAA in America is unique to the community that it serves, and each changes as its community changes—no two are exactly alike. In 2008, local arts agencies administered an estimated $858 million in local government funds for the arts to support cultural organizations, provide services to artists and/or arts organizations, and present arts programming to the public.
Americans for the Arts is committed to the continued health and well-being of the arts in America. The last 50 years have certainly demonstrated that by helping the nation’s local arts agencies deliver programs and services at the local level, we’re helping the arts continue to thrive. These 50 tips are a resource to remind us of where we’ve been, what we’ve learned along the way, and how to best equip ourselves for securing the future of the arts in America through effective community arts development by local arts agencies nationwide.
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Author: Maryo Gard Ewell
Book Info: 12 pp, report (2009)
Publisher: Americans for the Arts
Product #: Mon-Dec2009