Earlier this year, President Donald Trump proposed a budget that would have eliminated the National Endowment for the Arts, among other federal cultural agencies.
So far, congressional subcommittees have effectively ignored those proposed cuts, but one new Atlanta coalition isn’t taking any chances.
The High Museum of Art is leading a united advocacy campaign for arts funding in Georgia. They’re joined by more than a dozen metro Atlanta arts and cultural organizations in the #GAArtsFuture postcard-writing campaign.
Each institution participating in the campaign is asked to offer blank postcards, along with the Washington, D.C. addresses of state representatives, to patrons on site at their locations.
Guests write their own messages of support for federal arts and culture funding, and the organizations will collect, stamp and mail the postcards to congressional leaders. All materials and support are available through the High’s #GAArtsFuture website.
In an interview with Lois Reitzes, High Museum of Art Director Rand Suffolk stressed the importance of getting organizations of all budgets and mediums across Georgia on board:
“We’ve hopefully created something that is simple but effective, and easily replicable across the entire state.”
WonderRoot Executive Director Chris Appleton agreed, adding that leaders in Washington need to hear from their constituents.
“The really important thing is making sure that we are activating our audiences and the people that we serve who are voters, who are citizens, that are electing the folks in office that are making decisions about what happens at the federal level," Appleton said.
Appleton said local investments follow national priorities. In other words, local and state governments and communities “buy in” to arts funding when the federal government invests in the arts as well.