As Mayor of Gary, Indiana, I believe that public art—combined with design, community engagement, and private and government investment—can transform the way we imagine a city. This perspective is especially crucial as we continue to think of new ways to rebuild our city as a destination.
Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson
City of Gary, Indiana
Bringing mayors and artists together to develop public art projects that spur economic activity, strengthen identity, and enrich city life
Through our strategic investments, our arts program is working to highlight the potential of artists to act as civic partners. That’s why Bloomberg Philanthropies launched the Public Art Challenge, which supports temporary public art projects that engage communities and enrich the vibrancy of city life.
- 237 cities applied to be part of the Public Art Challenge.
- The winners—Albany, Schenectady, and Troy, New York (a collaborative project); Gary, Indiana; Los Angeles, California; and Spartanburg, South Carolina—have received grants of up to $1 million.
- The selected projects address pressing civic priorities such as revitalizing decayed downtown areas, underutilized waterfronts, and vacant neighborhoods and cover a range of issues, including neighborhood safety, environmental sustainability, workforce development, and civic identity.
Providing small- to medium-sized cultural institutions with specialized skills training and tools to help them expand their ideas, tactics, operations, and impact
Small- to medium-sized cultural organizations are central to our nation’s creative ecology and are the lifeblood of local communities. These cultural organizations engage residents, promote social cohesion, and are major contributors to a city’s economy, identity, and quality of life. To bolster the potential of cultural organizations, Bloomberg Philanthropies expanded our Arts Innovation and Management program in 2015 from New York City to six new cities.
- More than 260 nonprofit cultural institutions in six cities across the United States: Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, will benefit from intensive training sessions led by the DeVos Institute of Arts Management to equip them with the tools they need to move toward achieving their fundraising, audience development, and marketing goals, all while building stronger cultural networks in each city.
- The program supports a diverse range of cultural institutions, including local cultural centers and performing, literary, and visual arts organizations that present music, film, dance, poetry, and other art forms.
- The grantees contribute to a thriving and robust arts community in each city, collectively serving more than 10 million residents.
arts organizations in 6 cities supported by Arts Innovation and Management program
Increasing access to the arts and helping cultural institutions engage audiences through digital technology
Bloomberg Philanthropies is helping cultural organizations engage participatory audiences, increase access to the arts, and stay current through the development of innovative digital platforms.
Through interactive touch screens and immersion rooms, specially designed apps with rich content as well as growing digital staffs to serve as connectors and innovators, Bloomberg Connects grantees are expanding the role of technology to become part of the core operations of cultural institutions, working side by side with senior leadership, curators, and education and development departments.
The Bloomberg Connects program works with 15 major cultural institutions worldwide, providing access for a broader audience to explore, share, and ultimately engage directly with everything that these institutions have to offer.
Participating museums and projects include:
- The American Museum of Natural History
- The Art Institute of Chicago
- Brooklyn Museum
- Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum
- The Jewish Museum
- Lincoln Center for the Arts
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- The Metropolitan Opera
- The Museum of Modern Art
- The New York Botanical Garden
- San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
- The Science Museum in London
- Singapore’s Gardens by the Bay
- Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
- Tate Modern