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Contact: Javier Flores, Department for Culture and Creative Development
Art-based Community Development Investment for San Antonio
EastPoint Promise Zone Artist Residencies Project one of 69 National Endowment for the Arts of Our Town projects selected nationwide
SAN ANTONIO (July 17, 2015) - National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu announced 69 Our Town awards totaling almost $5 million through the Our Town program's fifth year of funding. The City of San Antonio Department for Culture & Creative Development (DCCD) is one of those recommended organizations and will receive $100,000 for the EastPoint Promise Zone Artist Residencies Project. The NEA received 275 applications for Our Town this year and will make grants ranging from $25,000 to $200,000.
"The EastPoint Promise Zone Artist Residencies Project demonstrates the best in creative community development and whose work will have a valuable impact on its community,” said Chairman Chu. "Through Our Town funding, arts organizations continue to spark vitality that support neighborhoods and public spaces, enhancing a sense of place for residents and visitors alike."
The Our Town grant program supports creative placemaking projects that help to transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with the arts at their core. Since the program’s inception in 2011 and including these projects, the NEA will have awarded 325 Our Town grants totaling almost $26 million in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia.
“The arts reveal the heart and soul of our nation,” said Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Julían Castro. “We’re proud to work with the NEA to create neighborhoods of opportunity where culture is honored and creativity can flourish. Together with our partners, we’ll give more Americans the chance to experience life in a vibrant and thriving community.”
The EastPoint Promise Zone Artist Residencies is envisioned as a collaborative project led by DCCD through its public art program, Public Art San Antonio. The NEA Our Town grant will provide resources for local artists to realize public art projects in the EastPoint Promise Zone and will facilitate connections to establish long-lasting relationships between artists and EastPoint’s many community partners including the United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County, the San Antonio Housing Authority, San Antonio for Growth on the Eastside (SAGE) and SA2020, San Antonio Independent School District (SAISD), Judson Independent School District, St. Philip’s College, and private sector businesses, employers and investors.
“Great public art projects create neighborhood landmarks, encourage pride in our communities, and open doors for residents of all ages to enjoy rich new experiences,” said San Antonio Mayor Ivy R. Taylor. “I congratulate the Public Art San Antonio program and its partners and am delighted to welcome the NEA’s Our Town initiative to the EastPoint Promise Zone, which continues to attract federal funding and support.”
Major project activities include a series of informative workshops that will be planned as part of a community engagement phase to bring visiting artists and administrators who have led nationally-recognized, community-based public art projects that transform and revitalize communities to speak about their work and catalyze discussion related to the role of art in building communities. This phase will be followed by community-focused artist residencies where local artists will engage with the Eastside Promise Zone neighborhood to create community-driven projects.
“The City of San Antonio recognizes the power of the arts to transform local communities, and will facilitate opportunities for artists to create meaningful projects in the EastPoint Promise Zone through the EastPoint Promise Zone Artist Residencies initiative,” said San Antonio City Manager Sheryl Sculley. “The resulting public art projects have the opportunity to become permanent artworks, temporary installations or a series of performative activities for our residents and visitors to San Antonio to experience and enjoy.”
For a complete listing of projects recommended for Our Town grant support, please visit the NEA web site at arts.gov. Project descriptions, grants listed by state and by project type, and resources are available as well. The NEA’s online resource, Exploring Our Town, features case studies of more than 70 Our Town projects along with lessons learned and other resources.
Your guide to arts and culture events in San Antonio is GetCreativeSanAntonio.com
City on the Rise: San Antonio
San Antonio is a city on the rise for the new face of America—a diverse, progressive and globally competitive city with a solid vision for national and international economic development. The City of San Antonio maintains a strong financial position with a “AAA” general obligation bond rating from all three major rating agencies. In 2014, Forbes labeled San Antonio the “Best City in the Southwest” for adults ages 18-34 for its dynamic economy, employment opportunities and affordable living. As the seventh-largest city in the United States, San Antonio is experiencing solid economic growth in 21st century industries such as bioscience, aerospace, cybersecurity and healthcare, which contribute billions to the local economy. San Antonio has also positioned itself at the forefront of the New Energy Economy in the United States, committed to investing and creating employment opportunities in green industries. San Antonio continues to experience the addition of missions at its several military commands, further fostering a significant relationship spanning more than 200 years. Thirty-one million visitors come to San Antonio every year, generating more than $13.4 billion annually and making the travel industry a vital asset to the city’s economic health. For more information, visit www.sanantonio.gov.
About the National Endowment for the Arts
Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America.