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Oklahoma Arts Council News

February 2012

Oklahoma Arts Council to Host Town Hall Meeting in Guymon

For Immediate Release
February 27, 2012

Joel Gavin
Director of Marketing and Communications
(405) 521-2037

Oklahoma City - The Oklahoma Arts Council will host a town hall style meeting in Guymon on Thursday, March 1, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Artist Incubation building located at 421 N. Main Street. During the meeting Council staff will highlight grants and services available through the state agency that can benefit communities in northwest Oklahoma. The meeting is part of the Council's efforts to assist with cultural and economic development throughout the state.

Arts and community leaders, artists, educators, and anyone interested in developing arts programs in a community or school setting are invited to attend. Participants will learn about effective program planning and Council grant criteria. Time will be allotted for individual consultations with Council staff.

There is no cost to attend. To reserve a seat for the meeting contact Molly O'Connor at 405-521-2025 or email her at

Portrait of Civil Rights Leader John Hope Franklin to Be Unveiled at State Capitol

For Immediate Release
February 8, 2012

Joel Gavin
Director of Marketing and Communications
(405) 521-2037

Oklahoma City - A new painting of civil rights leader, John Hope Franklin will soon take its place among renderings of other iconic Oklahomans in the State Capitol. On Wednesday, February 22 the public is invited to a dedication ceremony for the portrait, Dr. John Hope Franklin, painted by internationally acclaimed New York City artist, Everett Raymond Kinstler. The event will take place at 10 a.m. in the second floor rotunda.

Click here to read the full news release...

Capitol Dedication to Honor Civil Rights Leader

A new portrait of civil rights leader, John Hope Franklin will soon take its place among renderings of other iconic Oklahomans in the State Capitol. On Wednesday, February 22 the public is invited to the dedication ceremony for the portrait, Dr. John Hope Franklin, painted by internationally-acclaimed New York City artist, Everett Raymond Kinstler.

The portrait of Franklin, a nationally-recognized historian and Oklahoma Cultural Treasure , will become a permanent addition to the Capitol Art Collection, which tells Oklahoma's story through its people, events, and land. Through Franklin's portrait, visitors to the Capitol will be reminded of his contributions and legacy as an African-American and an Oklahoman. Join us as we celebrate the unveiling of this important addition to the collection!

Dr. John Hope Franklin dedication ceremony
February 22, 10:00 a.m.
Oklahoma State Capitol
Second floor rotunda

Click here to learn more about John Hope Franklin and the portrait artist, Everett Kinstler.

Skirvin to Host 2012 Oklahoma Arts Conference

Make plans to join your industry peers from around the state on October 23 & 24 for the 2012 Oklahoma Arts Conference! We are pleased to announce the historic Skirvin Hotel in downtown Oklahoma City as this year's conference site!

Take full advantage of your time in the capital city, which is garnering national attention for its recent economic and cultural renaissance. Learn how the arts and a growing creative class are playing key roles in attracting business and revitalizing neighborhoods. Spend time at the city's many museums, cultural districts, and unique shops, cafes, and restaurants. You won't want to miss this year's conference!

Stay tuned for updates on conference sessions and events as we continue to plan for the gathering of the state's arts and cultural industry at the beautiful Skirvin Hotel.

Oklahoma Arts Conference
October 23 - 24, 2012
Skirvin Hotel
Oklahoma City

Apply for an NEA Fast-Track Grant by May 24

Grants of $10,000 are available for programming that extends the reach of the arts to underserved populations through the National Endowment for the Arts' Challenge America Fast-Track grant category. Available primarily to small and mid-size organizations, the Fast-Track category is meant to encourage and support programs that engage the public with diverse and excellent art while strengthening community livability. Grants in this category have an expedited review process.

For more information about Challenge America Fast-Track grants click here.

Community Development: The House the Arts Built

by Kim McCoy, Director of Cultural Development and Public Policy

A thriving environment for community development doesn?t magically appear. It is painstakingly constructed with sweat equity, vision, investment and long-term commitment. Like building a home, once a firm foundation is set, the project takes shape. The walls go up, windows are installed and before long, you have a fully functional house. Naturally, people want to visit and stay around for a while to enjoy your space.

When it comes to building strong, vibrant, and enduring communities the Oklahoma Arts Council understands the importance of including arts and cultural resources as key ingredients. One of the most important things our agency can do is cultivate leaders who know how cultural resources foster successful community development.

In our efforts to create such leaders, the Council organizes programs like Leadership Arts, and supports arts education and lifelong learning opportunities in the arts. Along with our community partners, the Council works to promote the acquisition of creative workforce skills, improve critical analysis, enhance creative problem solving, and cultivate a greater understanding of community aesthetics.

Why are these things important? Because they manifest and harvest capable leaders who understand economic development, quality of life and how "the house the arts built" brings community together.

To that end, the Council is designing a strategy to foster and sustain relationships with city governments to help build stronger Oklahoma communities using the arts. We encourage you to stay tuned during 2012 for updates on how we intend to accomplish this. In the meantime, be prepared to grab a brick and help build the house and stay around to enjoy it!

Click here to learn how we can assist with your community development needs.

2012 Leadership Arts Class Announced

The Oklahoma Arts Council has announced the names of 31 Individuals from 21 Oklahoma communities who will participate in the upcoming 2012 Leadership Arts program. Beginning February 22, monthly sessions will be held in four Oklahoma communities, where Leadership Arts class members will take an in-depth look at how the arts enrich quality of life, strengthen state and local economies, and improve education.

Cultural development director, Kim McCoy said she's excited for this year's program to begin. "One thing I enjoy is seeing people from different backgrounds come together. We see city planners, teachers, artists, and others develop relationships that benefit their communities and careers."

Since 2008 the program has graduated 118 members from communities of all sizes statewide. Many graduates are now actively involved in community development projects.

Click here to see the 2012 class of Leadership Arts.

Doris Duke Foundation Offers Grants for Performing Artists, Organizations

A lifelong artist and patron of the arts, Doris Duke's foundation was established in 1996 to support, "actors, dancers, singers, musicians and other fulfilling their ambitions and providing opportunities for the public presentation of their arts and talents.”

In its efforts to support the performing arts, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation offers several categories of support for artists and organizations. Click on the links below to learn about available funding opportunities:

Click here to visit the foundation website.