Artists and Arts Groups Share Nearly $800,000 in Grants

The Boston Foundation and the Barr Foundation are pleased to announce that 61 Greater Boston artists and arts groups will share $796,293 in grants to create, produce, or present their work in year 3 of the Live Arts Boston Program. The grantees were chosen from a pool of hundreds of local artists through an open application and community review process that included local artists, presenters, and producers.

A remarkable 72% of the grantee artist projects are headed by artists of color, and nearly half of the projects involve artists that identify as immigrants and new Americans. In addition to their grant funds, the grantees will receive wrap-around support services, advising, career workshops, networking and professional development opportunities that bring the total support for the project to about $1 million.

“We are honored to once again be able to support a talented, deserving cohort of artists to create, produce and present works that bring to life the diverse voices, cultures and communities that make up Greater Boston,” said Allyson Esposito, Senior Director for Arts and Culture at the Boston Foundation. “We welcome them to a powerful network of arts producers and performers we have partnered with through LAB, who are changing the way we think about and interact with the city.”

Live Arts Boston was launched in 2016 by the Boston Foundation and Barr Foundation as part of an effort to address the lack of resources directed to individual artists and small arts organizations in Greater Boston. The first grants from the program were made in 2017. To date, Live Arts Boston has made 186 grants to 143 grantees, totaling more than $2.3 million. LAB has also provided over $500,000 in additional support to grantees to strengthen their networks and enhance their ability to leverage grant-funded projects towards achieving greater career goals.

“Producing new creative work always involves risk. Live Arts Boston provides resources for artists to take that risk, to experiment, to leap into unfamiliar terrain, and to lift up new ideas,” said E. San San Wong, Director of Arts & Creativity at the Barr Foundation. “It’s in the DNA of artists to be truth tellers to the world, and the Live Arts Boston artists enrich the social commentary in our city. With a special focus on artists of color and immigrant artists, they deepen the cultural narratives of Boston that are especially needed and relevant today

The impact of the grants can be seen in the results: in 2018, the 65 Live Arts Boston Grantees used their funds to put on at least 384 performances of new, original works. More than 60 percent of the grant dollars were spent to pay performers and other artists – creating more than 850 paid engagements for the artists.

Eight of the 61 grantees are from Jamaica Plain. Their names, followed by their project titles, are below:

Anthony Romero, Permanent Resident

Billy Dean Thomas, Breaking Binaries

Christopher Pegram, Final Fantasy (working title)

Feminine Empowerment Movement Slam, Inc, Home Spaces: Sustaining FEMS Community Oriented Programming

Karen S. Young, Older and Bolder Anthem

Non-Event, Sounding Boston: Experimental Music in Nontraditional Spaces (working title)

Tanya Nixon-Silberg, My Night in the Planetarium

Un-Bound Bodies Collective, UnBound Bodies Lab—UnBinding Series

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