New Bedford Arts Get $70k in State Grants
NEW BEDFORD — Seven arts and culture projects in New Bedford have been chosen for a total of $70,000 in funding to bring their ideas to life.
New Bedford Creative announced on Monday the recipients of the "Art is Everywhere" grant from MassDevelopment and the Barr Foundation.
This year, the third annual "Art is Everywhere" grant goes to six first-time recipients.
Five of the seven projects will be fully funded, and five of them represent the impact the city's people of color are making in New Bedford, according to the announcement.
"Art is Everywhere" Grant Recipients
New this year is Dil ba Dil Rah Dhara (From One Heart to Another): The Afghan Women’s Art Project, which in partnership with the South Coast Afghan Welcome Network (SAWN) and the New Bedford Free Public Library will receive $11,600.
La Soul Renaissance will celebrate its 20th year with a special celebration of local Cape Verdean, Black, Indigenous, Caribbean, immigrant and wider communities, made possible with a $13,000 grant.
This summer will also see the launch of a bilingual Yoga series in the city's parks, Ease into Summer Kids, by Tahais Real-Martins of Yoga Es Vida, supported with $6,000.
David Andrews and The Communal Space will also host Kids Open Art Week with a $3,400 award.
Two projects will recognize the heritage of New Bedford’s Abolition movement:
Safe Station: New Bedford's Underground Railroad will be placed by the Massachusetts Design Art and Technology Institute (DATMA) at the New Bedford YMCA thanks to $6,000 in funding.
And the New Bedford Historical Society will put $20,000 towards its Frederick Douglass Memorial at Abolition Row Park.
Finally, Coastal Foodshed will pair food with creativity at farmers markets throughout the city with a $10,000 grant.
“These projects add to the richness of our shared cultural experiences,” said Margo Saulnier, Creative Strategist for New Bedford Creative. “Collectively, these ‘Art is Everywhere’ projects propel New Bedford into a more equitable future by expressing the creativity of our entire community.”
“The recipients in this round of the ‘Art is Everywhere’ Grant Program showcase the breadth of what New Bedford’s creative community has to offer,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, who serves as chair of MassDevelopment’s Board of Directors.
“From a bilingual Yoga Series focused on serving underrepresented youth, to honoring the legacy of Fredrick Douglass, these projects have the power to catalyze the local arts-based creative economy in a way that creates deep impact in the community.”
The "Art is Everywhere" grant is made possible through a MassDevelopment transformative development initiative program called "TDI Creative Cities."
Piloted in New Bedford and funded with $1.3 million from the Barr Foundation in 2019, the arts-based economic development program has now been fully funded through 2022.
New Bedford Creative noted in the announcement that the group also anticipates more funding to be awarded this year through the city's American Rescue Plan Act funding, $1.2 million of which will go to support local artists and art organizations.
Mayor Jon Mitchell announced the funding in May 2022, stating that the funds would "energize our cultural scene."
More information and updates are available at newbedfordcreative.org.