(Above) "Manhattan Beach" by Susan Logoreci.
On Tuesday (March 31, 2020), the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved Supervisor Ridley-Thomas’ motion to proclaim April as Arts Month! In these unprecedented times in which we find ourselves, Arts Month serves as the perfect reminder of just how vital arts, culture, and creativity are to civic life.
At the Department of Arts and Culture, we’ve been bolstered by the incredible creativity and resilience of artists and arts organizations, big and small, who have found new ways of creating work and engaging community. From webinars and online classes to streaming performances and social distance dancing, the internet is alight with creativity, connecting us to one another and to ourselves, adding meaning and insight to these uncertain times.
While our staff diligently works from home, we are continuing essential services and responding to the needs of the creative sector on multiple fronts:
- We are partnering with the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs to feature technical assistance resources from the new LA County Business & Worker Disaster Help Center. Learn more by selecting "Industry Resources" at LACountyHelpCenter.org/for-workers/
- We are adjusting our programs in response to COVID-19. The spring Arts Tune Up series will be presented virtually April 22 – 24. Grant reporting and invoicing have been streamlined to ensure funding remains accessible to grantee organizations. And we have announced new dates and guidelines for the Arts Internship Program that increase flexibility for organizations and student interns.
- We continue to update the Arts and Culture COVID-19 Resource page with new information including emergency grants. Two to note: the CARES Act—for those thinking of applying we recommend this insightful blog post by our friends at Nonprofit Finance Fund; and the LA County Employer Assistance Grant Fund, just announced by Los Angeles County Department of Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services. Applications for the latter open April 8.
The arts are vital to our quality of life, our wellbeing, and our sense of belonging, and will be key to our collective resilience and recovery. The human spirit sings in moments of crisis, and it is with a true sense of gratitude that we extend heartfelt thanks to our hardworking health workers, first responders, and County colleagues on the front lines; to the artists, arts organizations, and creative professionals who continue to add meaning to our lives; and to our municipal arts agencies, arts funders, partners, and LA County Arts Commissioners, who never waiver in their support.
While we are #SaferAtHome, tune in to our social media channels (@LACountyArts) this month as we share out more artist and creative sector resources, parent and educator info, and virtual performances and events being hosted and presented by our grantees under #ArtsMonth2020. Arts Month has never been more needed than now.