The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts

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FEBRUARY 18, 2002 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Announces $1 Million in Grants to Nine Regional Visual Arts Organizations

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts today announced $1 million in capacity-building grants to nine small-to-midsize non-profit visual arts organizations. The grants are part of the foundation's nationwide Warhol Initiative. The grantees are: Creative Time, Inc., Dieu Donné Papermill, and Exit Art, all in New York City; Headlands Center for the Arts in San Francisco; the Kansas City Arts Coalition in Kansas City, MO; Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions and Self-Help Graphics in Los Angeles; Out North in Anchorage, AK; and Space One Eleven in Birmingham, AL.

Announcing the awards, foundation president Joel Wachs praised the organizations for the pivotal role they play in strengthening the arts infrastructures of their regions. He said that the Warhol Initiative had been created in order to assist such non-profits in achieving the long-term fiscal stability they need to effectively serve artists and their communities.

Wachs noted that in many cases these organizations are the only institutions of their kind within a large geographic area. "They are on the ground, nurturing America's artists in their local communities, offering both needed services and supportive environments. To a very great extent, they are what keeps American creativity thriving, and we owe them a great debt of gratitude for doing their work so devotedly and so well."

Wachs remarked that while this is the third year of the five-year Warhol Initiative, "it is perhaps more important now than ever in light of the severe economic blow non-profit arts organizations suffered in the wake of September 11th."

Foundation program director Pamela Clapp called the Initiative "an excellent example of the innovative approach the foundation has taken to assisting its primary constituency, the nation's non-profit visual arts organizations." She said that it was created in response to a study the foundation commissioned showing that small-to-mid-sized visual arts organizations were both particularly valuable and uniquely vulnerable. It is directed at "artist-centered organizations" with budgets of $1 million or under, and offers sizable grants for organizational capacity-building. The grants include technical assistance as well as targeted funding of stabilization-oriented projects like endowments, mortgage payment, cash reserves, and other similar efforts.