Posts Tagged ‘Americans for the Arts’


Americans for the Arts Convention

May 3, 2018

Denver – June 14-17

Join your fellow arts leaders and professionals for the arts networking event of the year! The 2018 Annual Convention will feature more than 100 speakers, more than 30 sessions, three Preconferences covering public art, equitable investment in the arts, and creative youth development – ten ARTventure tours across Denver.


The Americans for the Arts annual convention is scheduled for June 14 – 17 in Denver. It will be sure to provide an outstanding learning experience for you!


Americans for the Arts Blog

March 11, 2018

Jeff Poulin – repost

The Americans for the Arts Education Program Manager Jeff Poulin provided a blog post called Shooting Survivors Turn to the Arts in Wake of Tragedy on February 27. Below is the opening of the post.

On February 14, 2018, seventeen people, including students and adults, were killed in a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Since this tragedy, the voices of young people from the community have been lifted through their dynamic advocacy to call for reform to national, state, and local gun- and mental health-related policies. Many of the strong skills that they are using for their advocacy came from their immersion and studies in arts education.

Jeff Poulin

The movement that the young people have started—Never Again—utilizes myriad skills that the students have honed from their artistic learning experiences. As reporting from the New Yorker noted, “…it’s not a coincidence that a disproportionate number of the Never Again leaders are dedicated members of the drama club.” Some members of the group were in rehearsal at the time of the shooting, while others referenced their participation in arts courses during town hall meetings. One of the group’s leaders, Emma González (who was in the school’s auditorium at the time of the shooting), has received much praise from numerous artists for her impassioned speech at Broward County Federal Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale a few days following the incident.



AFTA Awards

March 9, 2018

Americans for the Arts nominations deadline: March 12

At the Americans for the Arts annual convention each year several awards are presented. The following may be applicable to the arts education field.

  • The Arts Education Leadership Award
  • The Alene Valkanas State Arts Advocacy Award
  • The Robert E. Gard Awarrd

Information on these awards are located on the Awards webpages. Thanks to Jeff Poulin, Americans for the Arts Education Program Manager for summarizing the three awards below.

The Arts Education Leadership Award is given annually to honor transformational leadership in arts education. The award brings visibility and national recognition to our field’s highest caliber leaders and the organizations and communities they serve.

Presented each year in conjunction with Americans for the Arts Annual Convention, the Alene Valkanas State Arts Advocacy Award honors an individual at the state level whose arts advocacy efforts have dramatically affected the political landscape.

The Gard Award aims to raise up projects completed in the last year led by individuals or organizations working to cross the arts into other aspects of community life in meaningful, measurable ways. In previous years, after a public voting process, Americans for the Arts awarded the ArtsMemphis Community Engagement Fellowship, an innovative program connecting the arts and civic activation in Memphis, TN, and the Red Can Graffiti Jam, an annual celebration of traditional Lakota arts and culture melded with a hip hop festival and graffiti jam in Eagle Butte, SD.

The nominations are open for two more weeks (closing March 12, 2018 at midnight Eastern time).  Consider nominating someone.

Please note: to nominate a person or project, you must be a member of Americans for the Arts – when you click the above link, if you see a notice that says, “You do not have permission to view this form,” please click the “Login” link toward the top right of the page, login, and revisit the link and the nomination form should appear. You do not have to be a member of Americans for the Arts to be nominated, only to nominate.


Congressional Art Competition

January 27, 2018

Free speech rights

On the Americans for the ARTSBLOG recently Nina Ozlu Tunnel, Chief Counsel of Government and Public Affairs & Executive Director, Americans for the Arts Action Fund provided a post on Pulphus v. Ayers case. David Pulphus was a high school student from St. Louis whose painting had been selected to hang in the Cannon Tunnel of the U.S. Capitol as part of the 2016 Congressional Art Competition.

The painting was removed a year ago by the Architect of the Capitol after a small group of Congressmen objected to the art work. The painting depicts a civil rights demonstration. Americans for the Arts believes that arts education and creative expression is a central right of every young person and have joined 17 national, state, and local arts service organizations as amicus curiae in the Pulphus v. Ayers case in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, urging reversal of the ruling.

READ the entire blog post to learn more. Maine has participated in the Congressional Art Competition. The Maine Arts Commission partners with the Maine College of Art and the National Scholastic Art and Writing Awards to select the artwork. Gold and silver winners from the Maine Regional Scholastic Art Awards are automatically submitted to be juried in February for the Congressional Art Competition.

Maine’s current U.S. Capitol current Maine artworks.


Arts Education News

January 14, 2018

Great ‘food for thought’

Thanks to the Americans for the Arts (AFTA) for providing these articles in the news! Join AFTA and receive this kind of arts education information and much more.



VANS Grants

January 7, 2018

Available for high schools

Deadline: February 9, 2018
VANS Custom Culture Grants are available to public high schools (including charter schools) serving students in grades 9-12 or community based nonprofit organizations/governmental agencies serving as a fiscal agent for arts programming at a qualifying school. The grants are intended to encourage the inclusion of the arts as an integral component of an excellent education, and to support activities that are consistent with local and national learning standards for arts education. Ten (10) schools across the country will each receive a $2,000 grant to support their work in providing high-quality dance, media arts, music, theatre and/or visual arts instruction for students.

Americans for the Arts is pleased to again partner with VANS the Custom Culture Grant program. This program seeks to increase visibility for and resources available to arts educators and schools across the country, in order to sustain the arts as a vital part of education. The grant program is supported by funds from the sales of the winning shoe design in the Custom Culture Art Competition.

To learn more, please download the full guidelines (PDF).


National Arts and Humanities Month

October 1, 2017


This month is recognized as National Arts & Humanities Month – a month to shed light on the importance of culture in America. What does that mean to you and how might you celebrate this with your students. In 1993 Americans for the Arts and national partners designated this month-long celebration with the following goals:

  • FOCUSING on the arts at local, state, and national levels;
  • ENCOURAGING individuals and organizations to participate in the arts;
  •  ALLOWING governments and businesses to show their support of the arts; and
  •  RAISING public awareness about the role the arts and humanities play in our communities and lives.

Below are ideas for you and your students to get involved.


If you want to participate you post a photo related to the day’s theme with the hashtag #ShowYourArt2017 in the caption on Instagram. Follow @Americans4Arts on Instagram for more information and updates.


Americans for the Arts is also hosting their second annual National Creative Conversation on Facebook on Tuesday, Oct. 17 from 9-10 p.m. ET. This is your chance to connect and chat with other arts advocates across the country about the arts in our communities. The hour-long conversation will be driven by a series of questions around the topic “Are the Arts for Everyone?” Let others know about the Facebook event!

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