Thursday, December 19, 2013

More on City of Austin Intentions for $30k from National Endowment for the Arts

Press release published December 19, 2013 after NEA's announcement of grants on December 11:

2013 12

City of Austin receives National Endowment for the Arts grant to support citywide Cultural Mapping Project
The grant will support a 2-year community-wide cultural mapping project

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Acting Chairman, Joan Shigekawa, recently announced that the City of Austin’s Cultural Arts Division of the Economic Development Department is one of 895 organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Art Works grant. The $30,000 grant will support a 2-year sophisticated community-wide cultural mapping project exploring Austin’s cultural assets and economic and community development strategies.

The project will enable the creative sector to integrate goals with City initiatives in order to inform potential future artist housing, creative sector incubators, and other cultural facilities in development projects. It will also assist in informing the growth and location of creative corridors or hubs and cultural districts as identified in the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan.

“The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support these exciting and diverse projects that will take place throughout the United States,” said Acting Chairman Shigekawa. “Whether it is through a focus on education, engagement, or innovation, these projects all contribute to vibrant communities and memorable experiences for the public to engage with the arts.”

Starting in mid-2014, citizens will be invited to participate in sessions geared toward developing a series of GIS maps and visuals focused on the ten new Council districts. The maps will include physical cultural assets – such as pieces of public art or performance venues; non-cultural data that describe the social dynamics of Austin; current City planning and economic initiatives; and artist visuals that present community meaning.

“We are excited about mapping the many creative resources we have in Austin,” said Megan Crigger, Cultural Arts Division Manager. “It gives us an opportunity to explore the intersection between Austin’s creative sector, the economy, and place, and identify strategies to ensure we continue growing the creativity that distinguishes Austin from other cities.”

Accompanying the final maps will be individual reports that describe the discussions, findings, and recommendations for priority community and economic development strategies.

Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence: public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and enhancing the livability of communities through the arts. The NEA received 1,528 eligible Art Works applications, requesting more than $75 million in funding. Of those applications, 895 were recommended for grants for a total of $23.4 million.

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Art Works grant support, please visit the NEA website at

City of Austin Cultural Arts Division

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