Grants totaling $1,808,796 for fiscal year 2014-2015 were approved at the Cultural Trust Board’s quarterly meeting July 17. Awards of $602,932 were made in each of the Trust’s three grant categories: competitive cultural development grants (to arts and culture organizations); cultural participation grants (to county and tribal coalitions); and partner grants to the Trust’s five statewide partners (Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Heritage Commission, Oregon Humanities, Oregon Historical Society and the State Office of Historic Preservation).
“Cultural Trust dollars, by design, support broad statewide cultural programming in the areas of the arts, heritage and the humanities,” said Executive Director Brian Rogers. “Distributing the funds through cultural partners, county/tribal coalitions and individual arts and culture organizations ensures the impact is felt by as many Oregonians as possible. “
Projects to be funded through cultural development grants include: Josephy Center for Arts and Culture’s multi-dimensional program to celebrate the unique culture and history of Wallowa County and the surrounding region; “Entertain the Future,” a capital campaign to enhance and expand the Newport Performing Arts Center; and Portland nonprofit PHAME’s development and production of a newly commissioned full-length musical theatre work that will feature performers with and without developmental disabilities, including both PHAME artists and local professional actors.
Competitive Cultural Development grants, by region, were awarded to:
Columbia River Maritime Museum, Inc., Astoria – $31,400
To help convert a former modern retail hardware store and lumber warehouse adjacent to the Columbia River Maritime Museum into one of the finest secure and climate-controlled conservation and collection storage facilities of any maritime museum in the country. The grant matches funding from the Collins Foundation for the installation of a sprinkler system, upgrades to the fire and security systems, and modest remodeling so that the buildings will meet state building codes and modern collections storage standards.
Egyptian Theatre Preservation Association, Coos Bay – $12,600
To hire an Executive Director/Theater Manager for the newly renovated Egyptian Theatre in downtown Coos Bay. With the completion of more than $1 million in improvements, the theater reopened to the public in June. The new position will leverage the community engagement created by this successful local fundraising effort as a means of expanding cultural programming and activities at the theatre.
Neskowin Coast Foundation/Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, Otis – $34,500
To replace two of the key facilities used for Sitka’s artist-in-residence programs, the Tree House residence and the Bunk House writing studio, with a single purpose-built facility combining both functions in a single new, energy-efficient and compact 550 square-foot building. The existing facilities are beyond repair due to mold, mildew and decaying wood. The new facility is planned for multiple uses and will be built to high environmental sustainability standards. It will serve Sitka’s programs for many years.
Oregon Coast Council for the Arts, Newport – $15,000
To support “Entertain the Future,” a phased-approach capital campaign designed to enhance and expand the Newport Performing Arts Center. The signage and lighting initiatives reflect the third and fourth initiatives of this effort. Completion of these initiatives will enhance the market awareness of the theater by upgrading exterior signage and lighting. In addition, by upgrading the lighting in the Alice Silverman Theater, the performance capacity of the center will increase by increasing lighting flexibility and reducing the set-up time associated with lighting design.
Trail’s End Art Association, Gearhart – $17,000
To repair or replace old growth beams, siding, windows and an accessibility ramp for the Trail’s End Art Association’s home, a 103-year-old, turn-of-the-century annex to the original Gearhart School. The structure has great value to the community in that it houses a community gallery and art studio.
Yaquina Lighthouses (Friends of), Newport – $6,000
To restore the historic garden at Yaquina Head Lighthouse. The garden existed in the 1880s and light keepers tended it as part of their daily duties. The project will restore the site to a functional vegetable garden and native plant nursery to enhance visitor appreciation of the life and daily activities of a keeper maintaining a homestead as well as the light. Visitors and students will be engaged with a new facet of lighthouse history, nutrition and gardening education, and community service. This will increase youth and community access to and engagement with a historic site.
The High Desert Museum, Bend – $24,000
To stage two exhibitions and companion programming: “Painting Oregon’s Harvest” and “Brewing Culture” (working title). “Painting Oregon’s Harvest” presents whimsical and vibrant paintings of Oregon’s diverse agricultural landscapes, created by native Oregonian Kathy Deggendorfer and exploring rural Oregon with a focus on the cultural significance of century farms. “Brewing Culture” focuses on the historic framework for brewing and the significance and impact on contemporary Central Oregon culture.
Chief Joseph Days Rodeo, Inc., Joseph – $11,300
To build a dance arbor on the Native American encampment at the Chief Joseph Days Rodeo at Joseph, Ore. The rodeo attracts more than 5,000 people per night; the dancing has become a significant part of the event. Dancing is currently performed under a worn canopy supported by uneven poles. Many attendees stand or sit on the ground or on the few wooden benches. A permanent structure with seating will also be used year-round for community events.
Crossroads Carnegie Art Center, Inc., Baker City – $4,480
To bring PARC Resources, a consulting firm, to Baker City for a three-day board training and outreach to build the Legacy Giving Program called the Fleetwood Circle. In Crossroads’ 51 years, no formal Legacy Giving Program has been created. With PARC Resources’ assistance, Crossroads will not only build the program but develop the policies and procedures, roles and responsibilities and vision of its legacy giving program to create a sustainable future.
Fishtrap, Inc., Enterprise – $11,900
To support Fishtrap’s Capacity Enhancement project to strengthen staff capacity to create and administer robust marketing, data management, and outreach efforts – the key infrastructure that supports programmatic accomplishments and makes them possible. The aim is to create a strong, stable foundation so that Fishtrap can thrive and continue to advance clear thinking and good writing in and about the West for decades to come.
The Josephy Center for Arts and Culture, Joseph – $15,000
To support a multi-dimensional program that will celebrate the unique culture and history of Wallowa County and the surrounding region. The Center has scheduled a series of four themed art exhibits and associated events dedicated to important elements of its community. They will offer four month-long exhibits, each dedicated to a specific theme: Art and Agriculture, Women in Art, Native American Art, and Art and Natural Resources. Several related events will be staged with local and regional community partners including lectures, music and classes.
Liberty Theatre Foundation, La Grande – $7,500
To replace the missing historic canopy – a distinctive, character-defining feature on the theater’s front facade. The restoration will match the design seen in historic photos of the Liberty from the 1920s and 1930s.
Jefferson Live!, Ashland – $18,000
To restore the Holly Theatre – listed on the National Register of Historic Places – for use as a nonprofit performing arts center. The intent is to create a facility that is both historically authentic and capable of supporting a wide range of contemporary cultural events. As a part of this larger project, Oregon Cultural Trust funds will be used to recreate and install the unique and character-defining carpeting that was installed when the theater first opened in August, 1930.
Josephine Community Libraries, Inc., Grants Pass – $16,600
To support The 21st-Century Library Outreach Program to help community members discover how the library can enrich their lives. The program will send ambassadors into the community and host events in the library; both will be supported by print and online materials. Libraries are dynamic community centers where people log in, download and borrow digital and print resources that improve their lives and broaden their cultural understanding; many in Josephine County are unaware of the wealth of resources available for free.
Corvallis Parks and Recreation (Friends of), Corvallis – $20,000
To complete phase I improvements to the Knotts-Owens Farmstead Rehabilitation Project. Phase I consists of stabilizing the farmstead buildings, which are currently unstable due to deferred maintenance, time and weather. Without intervention, these buildings would decay beyond the point of rehabilitation, resulting in costly reconstruction activities. The grant funds will stabilize the most critically deteriorated building components.
Eugene-Springfield Youth Orchestras, Eugene – $15,200
To partner with the Eugene Symphony and Eugene School District 4J to evolve its after-school strings instruction classes (String Academies) into a sequential music program that includes in-school enrichment activities, a curriculum aligned with in-school initiatives and intensity of instruction and performance. The once fee-based program will now be free of charge and will reach 95 students in the first year from five high-poverty 4J schools in Northwest Eugene.
Eugene Symphony Association, Inc., Eugene – $7,500
To support the 2014-15 Florence/Roseburg Residencies and Concerts, providing unique professional and artistic development opportunities for aspiring and student musicians in rural and lower-income communities. Over the past four years, ESA has sought to increase its impact in these communities through residency activities designed to enhance the capacity of local music education programs, support the development of young musicians, and raise public awareness of the value of youth participation in the arts.
Joint Forces Dance Company, Eugene – $4,250
To create an hour of new choreography, featuring two performers with disabilities and two without. The new, perspective-changing performances will inspire and educate audiences about the abilities of people usually labeled ‘disabled.’ The dance pieces will be performed for 2,700 children, and 2,400 adults in Lane, Multnomah and Jackson Counties. About 300 audience members will be people with disabilities. Artistic Director Alito Alessi and independent Dance Ability Teacher Laura Hiszczynskyj will choreograph.
Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene – $6,400
To create a customized visitor evaluation system that can be readily implemented by staff to help gather valid, reliable and meaningful data from museum visitors. The project will enhance our internal capacity to collect and use information to assess the impact of exhibitions and public programs, inform subsequent exhibition and program planning, and ensure the highest quality visitor experience. The final product will be made available online and without charge to Oregon cultural organizations that may wish to use it.
Linn-Benton Community College Foundation, Albany – $10,300
To produce an original play focusing on the lives, experiences and challenges of Latino families in the City of Independence. “Bridges” will be developed through a community-engaged play-making process with information obtained from story-circles, interviews and public forums. This project is a collaboration with the City of Independence, Department of Latino Outreach and the residents of Independence. “Bridges” will be performed with and for the citizens of Independence at the Riverview Park Amphitheater.
Oregon Contemporary Theatre/ Lord Leebrick Theatre Company, Eugene – $9,400
To present Nathan Alan Davis’ “Dontrell, Who Kissed the Sea” in 14 public performances and two shows for middle and high school students. Oregon Contemporary Theatre will collaborate with three theatre companies from across the United States to create a Rolling World Premiere for Davis’ modern day hero’s quest. Davis’ play blends poetry, wordplay and ritual to explore issues of race and cultural history in personal identity.
Salem Art Association, Salem – $35,600
To address critical issues of access and organizational capacity by (a) installing an elevator that will provide, for the first time, ADA access to the second-floor gallery at the historic Bush Barn Art Center in central Salem; and (b) renovating the Bush Barn Annex to provide a functional cultural and community space for art education, art creation, workshops, lectures, artist-residencies and more.
Santiam Heritage Foundation, Inc., Stayton – $9,000
To restore the original 1902 pass-through cupboard and period reproductions of the historic Brown House kitchen, including a new beveled glass period door and cabinets, new wiring and period lighting. A staging area for kitchen activities will be built in the adjacent utility room and a mop sink, counter and storage shelves and cabinets will be installed. Electrical outlets, period lighting and used appliances (electric range, dishwasher and refrigerator) will be installed until period reproductions can be purchased in the next phase of restoration.
Upstart Crow Studios, Eugene – $5,000
To present seven special theatrical performances for children involved in local service organizations, including CASA (Count Appointed Special Advocates), the Relief Nursery and Head Start. One of the seven performances will be a Spanish translation of “The Cat In The Hat.” The project will include Conversations over Cookies with the youth casts and backstage tours.
Portland Metro Area
Caldera, Portland – $14,200
To support Caldera’s Artists in Residence Program in the development of visual, literary and performing artists from Oregon and around the world. The program includes two-week and one-month residencies at Caldera’s Central Oregon Arts Center, where artists will receive accommodations, studios, stipends, professional development and a supportive community. The artists will present their work in free, public Open Studios and 1st Thursday exhibits as well as activities related to Caldera’s Youth Program.
Cappella Romana Vocal Ensemble, Portland – $10,900
To strengthen Cappella Romana’s infrastructure to match its level of program activity. The ensemble currently operates with only two part-time employees (1.0 FTE) while maintaining an increasingly intense schedule of cultural activities. Funding will expand the hours of the Operations Coordinator to full-time, improving patron and donor services and education-outreach activities, leading to increased earned and contributed revenues and a more stable organization.
CoHo Productions, Ltd. Portland – $6,700
To support a capacity building project, including the hiring of a Producing Artistic Director and supplemental staff to strengthen the organization’s infrastructure and programming. Support from the Trust allows CoHo to increase its season from three shows to four and dedicate both human and financial resources in support of individual theatre artists, providing greater service to the community.
Chamber Music Northwest, Portland – $11,400
To support Chamber Music Northwest’s 2014-15 season, featuring seven world and regional premieres commissioned and co-commissioned by the group. Included is a comprehensive season-long initiative to enhance audience understanding of, appreciation for and comfort with the new works by hosting a number of education and outreach events and community engagement activities.
The Circus Project, Portland – $5,100
To support the High Flyers, a 2014-15 project that integrates underserved populations of youth, particularly homeless youth, into a wider community of peers and professional performing artists. The Circus Project conducts eight-week introductory classes with partner organizations and offers continued practice in public classes, open gym time and intensive training programs at no cost to High Flyers youth.
Concordia University Foundation, Portland – $8,000
To support the Center for Volga German Studies’ preservation of valuable archival items and collections of the Volga Germans through a major digitization effort. The goal is to provide access to digital resources for multiple communities, allowing the center to increase knowledge and public awareness of the rich history, culture, and traditions of the Volga Germans and their descendants.
The Confluence Project, Portland – $12,000
To support “Gifts from Our Ancestors,” a K-12 art-based educational program, in Oregon schools along the Columbia River system in 2014-2015. The program supports arts and cultural education for students, professional development and opportunity for Tribal artists, and infrastructure and professional development for teachers to integrate art and indigenous culture into interdisciplinary curricula.
Jewish Theatre Collaborative, Portland – $5,000
To adapt and produce a world-premiere theatrical production of Nathan Englander’s novel “The Ministry of Special Cases” in a style that preserves the narrative voice of the author, activating it as dialogue. The production will serve as the culmination of the Page2Stage season and will take place at Milagro Theater in March and April 2015. It will be adapted and directed by Sacha Reich, executive director of the collaborative. Set in Argentina during the Dirty Wars, the play explores themes of cultural identity, erasure of identity, totalitarianism, dehumanization and loss.
Lan Su Chinese Garden, Portland – $13,100
To celebrate Lan Su Chinese Garden’s 8th Chinese New Year in 2015, one of the most anticipated activities at Lan Su and within the Portland community. New Year is the most important festival in Chinese culture, celebrated wherever Chinese people live. Lan Su marks the holiday with two weeks of lively and culturally appropriate programming for new and returning visitors and members. It enlivens the garden and the city at a time of year when plants are dormant, out-of-town visitors are at the lowest and area families typically stay home.
Live Wire Radio, Portland – $7,200
To support capacity-building for marketing and enhance Live Wire’s ability to support staff and leverage the consulting expertise needed to further grow audiences, build stronger roots in the community and market shows to other stations across the country.
Miracle Theatre Group, Portland – $15,600
To produce “American Night: The Ballad of Juan José” by Richard Montoya in the spring of 2015. “American Night” centers on the character of Juan José, who has left work as a police officer in Mexico, disillusioned by corruption, to create a better life for himself and his family. With bold comedic flair, the play provides a variety of viewpoints about what it means to become an American. Reflecting and contextualizing immigration in historic terms, “American Night” gives a human face to this political issue.
Northwest Children’s Theatre and School, Portland – $9,900
To support the expansion of accessibility efforts through additional promotion and equipment, as well as free performances to all families during designated showtimes. In 2014, NWCT became the first theater in Oregon to offer sensory-friendly productions for autistic and sensory sensitive children, due in part to a grant from the Oregon Cultural Trust.
Oregon Center for Photographic Arts/Blue Sky, Portland – $5,700
To support Blue Sky’s two-pronged endeavor to build leadership capacity through strategic planning and board training and development. The organization is ideally poised to create an actionable and measurable plan, having recently bolstered its administrative capacities through new full-time staff positions, and is looking to cultivate board membership in ways that increase outreach and grow both earned and contributed income.
Oregon Children’s Foundation/SMART, Portland – $5,000
To increase equity and representation in the literature children experience by providing additional high-quality, culturally-relevant literature to the SMART program. This will serve 9,000 PreK-3rd graders participating in the SMART reading program in 250 sites in 28 Oregon counties. SMART builds literacy in Oregon by engaging volunteers to read one-on-one with young children.
Oregon Children’s Theatre, Portland – $5,000
To support commissioning an original script and world premiere of “Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made,” as well as free education services to advance in-school learning, and free outreach services to ensure access for children that would not be possible otherwise. The project will use multimedia technology as a live player on stage, and a portable design that will enable touring to diverse outlying locations following its premiere in Portland.
Oregon Jewish Museum, Portland – $5,700
To support the merger of the Oregon Jewish Museum with the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center, to become a single, unified organization. The goal is to develop a new, shared future during a facilitated 12-month strategic planning process that will help create a solid foundation for the unified cultural organization.
Oregon Symphony Association, Portland – $24,000
To support the Oregon Symphony’s Waterfront Concert, a tradition that dates back to 1926 and brings together an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 people of all ages from all communities around the Portland metro area.
Oregon Zoo Foundation, Portland – $20,000
To commence the restoration and conservation of the “Continuity of Life Forms” Willard Martin mosaic. The mosaic greeted Oregon Zoo visitors for 40 years and is one of the earliest remaining designs by noted local architect Will Martin. The Oregon Zoo Foundation will contract an art conservator and restoration artist to ensure the accurate restoration and conservation of this splendid artwork for future generations.
PDX Pop Now!, Portland – $5,000
To improve Portland music’s accessibility (particularly for those under 21), facilitate creative exchange among artists and audiences from disparate music communities, and connect Portland artists with new audiences. The PDX Pop Now! Festival is a local, all-age, free, and geographically accessible showcase of Portland’s thriving, diverse music scene. Since 2004, the annual event has grown into the city’s premier local-music happening, presenting performances by approximately 45 local acts to an estimated 7,000 festival-goers who attend over three days.
PHAME Academy, Portland – $7,500
To support development, workshops and pre-production of a commissioned full-length musical theatre work tentatively called “The Journey.” Written by acclaimed singer-songwriter Laura Gibson and playwright Debbie Lamedman and produced by PHAME, “The Journey” will premier Aug. 14-16, 2015 with three performances at the Gerding Theater Armory at Portland Center Stage. The cast of “The Journey” will be performers with and without developmental disabilities, including both PHAME artists and local professional actors.
Pittock Mansion Society, Portland – $6,000
To support the Pittock Mansion Visitor Experience Project, a new curatorial vision designed to make a unique Portland cultural resource more engaging, accessible and meaningful for approximately 100,000 visitors per year. Support of the Visitor Experience Project will enhance learning opportunities and inspire interest in our region’s history, its people and culture. Grant support from the Cultural Trust will specifically support fabrication and installation of exhibit panels and interactive exhibit elements.
Portland Community College Foundation, Portland – $7,300
To support the 25th anniversary of Cascade Festival of African Films, the college’s free signature event, in February of 2015. Included will be a number of special events and programs above and beyond the usual feature and documentary films made by African filmmakers — showing an unprecedented number of feature/documentary films while bringing a record number of film directors from Africa for local/global cultural discussions.
Portland Piano International, Portland – $3,000
To support a pilot program that introduces audiences – especially youth – to exceptional, up-and-coming pianists. Selected by Artistic Director Arnaldo Cohen, each artist will play at least four recitals in multiple locations. The artist will introduce the works, answer audience questions and converse directly with the audience following the performance. The recitals will give the pianist invaluable experience and offer direct contact with some of tomorrow’s rising stars
Portland Playhouse, Portland – $15,600
To support “How to End Poverty in 90 Minutes:” an opportunity to challenge a different audience every performance with the question: how do you attack the problem of poverty in America – with a lens specifically focused on Multnomah County? Audiences will listen, explore, and ultimately choose how to spend $1,000 from ticket sales. It’s an experiment in collective decision-making and the potential for art to make the world a better place.
Regional Arts & Culture Council, Portland – $5,000
To support Work for Art with three new campaign videos, a mobile-friendly website, campaign documentation and a comprehensive program evaluation. These projects will enable expansion of the number and volume of workplace campaigns, educate a wider constituency and further streamline the program infrastructure.
Write Around Portland, Portland – $13,400
To support the Community Publishing Project, producing three publications of participants’ writing between August 2014 and May 2015. Each book will be professionally-designed and connect Oregonians with the rich and powerful writing of people who too often go unheard.
Write Around Portland changes lives by bringing creative writing workshops to homeless and senior centers, hospitals, prisons and treatment facilities.
Young Audiences of Oregon, Portland – $7,500
To implement and expand The Teaching Artist Studio, a comprehensive training program to develop the teaching and evaluation skills for teaching artists. The program will position Young Audiences as the leader in teaching artist quality and training. It will improve Young Audience’s financial position, raise the quality of work by teaching artists and improve student learning outcomes. The 20 participating teaching artists will teach a multi-session residency at a local school as part of this six-month program.