Published: Sun, March 19, 2017
Culture | By Julio Duncan

Advocates: Relatively small fund cuts have big impact on Arizona arts

Advocates: Relatively small fund cuts have big impact on Arizona arts

In addition, whole programs will be eliminated entirely. "The notion of eliminating expenditures of tax revenue of less than 20 cents per citizen to support the arts is antithetical to the idea of a vibrant modern democracy".

It has been rumored for weeks but Donald Trump's proposed federal budget issued today eliminates entirely the National Endowment for the Arts and The National Endowment for the Humanities. However, they do see the importance for arts funding, which makes "a difference with individuals of all ages in thousands of communities, large, small, urban and rural, and in every Congressional District in the nation". The cuts come from a budget first proposed by aides of Vice President Mike Pence, Russ Vought and John Gray.

Artist Mike Denison was quick to call Trump out, unleashing a series of tweets that highlight why our current president might be against the arts (not to mention free expression).

In their letter to Trump, the 24 senators pointed out that the NEA and NEH have been around since 1965 and have proven critically important to American culture. "If I can get a message across while making someone laugh then I've done my job".

CT cultural leaders reacted with dismay on Thursday to the proposed elimination of federal arts funding to thousands of arts and humanities projects nationwide each year, both small community organizations and major museums and performing-arts entities.

"The Double Edge Theatre which is located in Ashfield, Massachusetts, got a grant from the NEA this year, and it's being used to raise the visibility of farms and artists and crafts people", she says.

The Content Creators Coalition (c3) and the Future of Music Coalition, which are two advocacy groups for creators and musicians, said in a joint statement that President Trump's proposed budget "that guts the arts programs is indefensible". While the president's proposal has created some political drama, "in truth the [federal] budget process hasn't even started", she said.

Though critics of the NEA say it has occasionally funded controversial art projects over the years, the majority of its work has been positive, he said.

He said the Maine Humanities Council normally gets about half of its funding from the federal government, though a couple of big competitive grants recently boosted the amount to about 70 percent past year.

Johnson said, "It is in the neighborhoods of each community that a nation's art is born". The danger is, if congress approves Trump's budget plan and abolishes the National Endowment for the Arts, the money would not be available for the grants that are vital to the Art Center's operation, Gilbert said. "In a lot of markets, the only place for real in-depth local coverage is the PBS station, the only place for arts and culture, the only place for safe harbor for kids".

Tzougros said to preserve federal arts funding, advocates must remind policymakers that "elitism" in the arts is a "myth", and government funding actually makes the arts more accessible to all.

"He was the one that laid the ground work for creation of the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities", she said.

The National Endowment for the Arts does have some support in Congress. It is hard to imagine architecture exhibitions in museums, cultural institutors building new facilities, and non-profit organizations that encourage and support architecture remaining solvent and vibrant with these cuts.

"Some people thinks of arts as a frill but it improves critical thinking and math and we become and educated society", Steinberg said.

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