The National Endowment of the Arts: Why It Matters & How to Protect It

I’m sure you’ve heard, but the National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities, along with other useful government agencies might be eliminated from the federal budget.

 

This isn’t the first time, and if these programs survive the current administration’s budget cuts, I’m sure it won’t be the last…

 

Federally funded or not, the arts will always survive. It might get more difficult for artists and organizations to sustain themselves, but we’ll persist.

 

However here’s the thing that really breaks my heart: many of those that oppose the NEA are saying that art is “elitist”; it’s something that only the wealthy get to enjoy. And by taking a mere $0.46 from each American taxpayer and putting that money towards art and culture means that we’re just funding pastimes for the rich.

 

But really, funding the NEA and other agencies that promote the humanities and culture does the exact opposite. These agencies help arts communities all across the country to flourish. By allocating just .004% of the federal budget to the arts, the NEA helps bring art to those that need it most.

10 Optimistic Facts and Statistics about the Art Industry in 2017

 
If you’ve ever thought about becoming an artist, then you might find yourself worrying about what your future could potentially look like. You obviously don’t want to become the cliche starving artist.
 
Or maybe you have a child or friend that is considering an education or career in the arts, and you’re worried about their financial prospects or job security.
 
Well, your concerns aren’t unusual, but are they entirely necessary?
 

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10 Ways Artists Can Take Action to Create Change

If there’s one good thing that’s come from the elections, it’s this:

 

We’re all awake now.

 

And we know that it’s time for things to change.

 

Complacency isn’t an option. We can’t get comfortable, no matter what our social status, gender, skin color, or income can provide.

 

But even though we’ve begun to recognize even more faults in our society that need to be reconciled, it’s difficult to figure out what should happen next.

 

For the last week I’ve been trying to think of ways individuals can create change, either with art or otherwise. So I’ve pulled together a list of 10 ways artists can take action.

 

If you’re like me and want to find ways to use your creativity to make a difference, I hope this helps inspire you to get started!

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A Book & Print Sale with a Purpose

Late Tuesday night/early Wednesday morning, I wrote Artists: a Call to Arms.

 

This was my gut reaction to the 2016 US Elections.

 

The next couple days were a blur. I felt sick, exhausted, emotional, scared, confused, frustrated, lost. And a big part of me still does.

 

I can’t say that I’ve completely come to terms with all that’s happening in our country right now.

 

Who knows how these next four years will play out. My guess is that it’s not going to be easy. We’re going to have to fight hard to keep some of the rights we’ve won over the past eight years, and fight even harder to win the rights that are still technically on the table (or keep getting brought back to the table).

 

But like I said on Wednesday, artists can make a difference.

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Artists: A Call to Arms

I wanted to keep politics out of this.

 

But I think we can all agree, with tonight’s results from the 2016 US elections, that’s just not possible.

 

I’m scared…I’m scared for the things I love and the people I love. I’m worried about what’s going to happen to all that we’ve accomplished. For my rights and yours. For republicans and democrats alike. For everyone outside and inside the system.

The Story of aftrART

There are lots of reasons why I started aftrART. In fact, most of this month’s content is going to involve me trying to explain the many motives for this project, as quickly as I can.

 

But prior to today, I had to summarize my project in 600 words, and then in under 6 minutes for Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art’s Good ‘n Plenty Artist Award. To fully express my thoughts, I decided to overcomplicate everything by creating a 6 minute stop-motion animation. Honestly, I probably spent over 15 hours making that thing.

 

Fortunately it payed off, because I won!