Here’s a question for my long(er)time readers: should I continue with the weekly “around the horn” posts, or would you prefer if I selected only the articles that I have something to say about and gave them their own entries? I would then put articles that I merely find notable on my Twitter feed. Do comment, if you please. (I will interpret a lack of commentary as an endorsement for the latter strategy.)
- A new candidate for NEA Chair? Scuttlebut says Nathan Cummings Foundation arts and culture program director Claudine Brown is being seriously considered for the position.
- This somehow escaped mention last week, but NewMusicBox is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a look back at the previous decade. Check out this cool video cobbling together some of the more entertaining interview moments.
- The Council on Foundations annual conference was last week, and Sean Stannard-Stockton hosted a rotating crew of commentators on his website. I especially appreciated this post from Kathleen Enright, CEO of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, who notes that “the current pace of philanthropy is completely out of sync in our changed world.” Meanwhile, Philanthropy 2173 blogger Lucy Bernholz was on fire last week, challenging philanthropists to “consider the alternatives” to the status quo at even the most basic levels and questioning why institutional isomorphism (organizations mimicing like organizations) need be rampant in the sector. Change, it seems, is just around the corner, if those in the driver’s seat are ready to take the wheel. Will the L3C help get the party started?
- Speaking of bloggers on fire, Holden Karnofsky from Givewell has been on a roll lately, publishing two important posts last week. The first makes the case against funding small, unproven charities if you’re an individual donor. I am more or less on board with his reasoning, with the caveats that (a) this really is about lay individual donors, not foundations who theoretically should have the expertise to evaluate unproven models; and (b) this idea is much more applicable to “save the world” type charities with very general missions, rather than organizations in fields that thrive off of diversity and competition (like, for example, the arts). Then, over the weekend, Karnofsky pointed attention to a new study showing unprecedented educational outcomes for Harlem Children’s Zone. This development, as Holden explains, is really an astounding event given the rigor of the study and the sheer magnitude of the impact demonstrated.
- And for the final entry on the “bloggers on fire” series, Andy Horwitz of Culturebot looks to be emarking on another grand multi-part rant on the future of arts management. The first installment is here.
- Things may have changed a lot in recent decades, but Europe still hearts the arts way more than the US of A. The latest is that Pennsylvania is threatening to completely zero out arts funding from the state budget, while across the country, the arts continue to get hit hard from all sides. Despite high hopes for the new administration, Quincy Jones’s culture czar idea seems to be going nowhere fast (though Quincy isn’t about to give up advocating). Meanwhile, across the pond, Britain is funding rehearsal spaces for rock bands. At least Forbes is showing public art some love.
- Arts policy geekout alert: Canadian consultants Lord Cultural Resources publishes a cool-looking quarterly called Cultural Capital. The spring edition is here.
- Great article about how Yale Med school is using art history/appreciation classes to help train doctors’ attention to visual detail.