In this podcast, Grantmakers in the Arts gives you a front row seat into the Support for Individual Artist (SfIA) Committee. Never heard of the committee? Now is your chance to learn about it from the GIA Support for Individual Artist co-chairs, Adrianna Gallego, chief operating officer, National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures, and Eleanor Savage, program director, Jerome Foundation. They will discuss the committee’s latest data project, upcoming programming, and share what you can expect in the coming year. Continue reading for a few sentiments from exiting committee members.
“In 2007 I was drafting a new mission and designing the inaugural programs for 3Arts, and I remember hunting and pecking on the Internet to try to find organizations that directly funded artists and from which I could draw inspiration. It wasn’t an easy task, to say the least. After locating a few of these rare birds, I was subsequently invited to join the SfIA committee and there, lo and behold, I discovered a determined group of iconoclasts who were advocating for the expansion of artist support. The committee was (and still is) an infusion of fuel for me and, of course, for 3Arts. By 2012, hooked on sharing ideas, practices, and dreams, I became a committee co-chair. As I exit stage left, I am enduringly inspired by the committee and our growing field and grateful that I won’t have to conduct random Internet searches to know where to find a hub of leaders who truly and deeply understand the value of supporting individual artists.”
Esther Grimm, 3Arts
“I first learned about the important work of the Support for Individual Artists committee when I attended my first GIA conference in Chicago in 2010 (the committee had a different name then). At that conference, GIA (through the leadership of the then SFIA committee members) shared a draft position paper on the value and importance of supporting individual artists. I was fortunate that my employer at Rasmuson Foundation was already established as a committed funder for individual artists, but this draft paper and stated commitment by the broader arts funding field was deeply influential on me. It provided a defining moment and clarity to reinforce the values I already held in my role in arts philanthropy, and as a strong case to engage others who expressed interest in the direct support of artists, but who may have been unsure how to pursue those interests further. Through subsequent years SFIA served as an anchor to consistently and unabashedly stake a claim in directing support to artists and to build a broader and even more just community to share in that claim and commitment. I consider myself extremely fortunate for the privilege of serving the arts funding field through my participation with the committee, and proud of what has been accomplished since my first encounter with this incredible group of colleagues, and the many connections made with artists throughout. I hope GIA will be able to carry on this ongoing commitment in perpetuity.”
Jayson Smart, Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies
“This group was a vital part of me being effective and thoughtful about the work I was doing locally. In my time since moving to a more national role, this group has maintained an on the ground practitioner connection that is so valuable. I appreciated the candid and honest conversations that were had for the way they made me feel not so alone and, on some days, finding that much needed validation that I wasn’t crazy for thinking of doing the work in the way I was doing it.”
Ruby Harper, Americans for the Arts