The Kresge Foundation seeks to test new approaches to integrating arts and culture into multiple sectors, disciplines and systems concerned with community revitalization.
Focus Area Overview
Many elements of creative placemaking are not well understood, and that lack of clarity inhibits more widespread adoption of the practice among other sectors, fields and systems. By testing and documenting new approaches to creative placemaking, we expect to gain a deeper understanding of the contributions arts and culture can make within other systems and of integrative processes that can be widely deployed.
We are interested in supporting cross-sector/cross-disciplinary projects that embed arts and culture into local systems such as, but not limited to, municipal departments, community financial networks such as community development financial institutions, community banks, credit unions, comprehensive planning efforts, human services networks and regional food hubs.
Some of the Activities We Support
Pillsbury United Communities drives change for vulnerable populations in four Minneapolis neighborhoods through the disciplined integration of creative practice into organizational systems, practices and multiservice program delivery. This holistic approach engages residents and leverages embedded, cross-sector partnerships to increase social capital and entrepreneurial activity, create safer public spaces and strengthen neighborhood identity.
St Clair Superior Development Corp. in Cleveland employs an asset-based strategy that braids creative placemaking with economic development and the launch of a local food economy strategy. Creative placemaking activities generate new connections and access to fresh, local food, educate residents on how to work with whole ingredients and encourage them to share meals among neighbors. The effort connects to creative and culinary entrepreneurial endeavors through business training that honors place and the community’s cultural heritage.
The District of Columbia Office of Planning is dedicated to creating an inclusive city that has successful, green and connected neighborhoods that feature education and employment opportunities. Its approach includes arts and culture as a core element of comprehensive planning processes that are resident driven, cross-disciplinary and focused on human capital and infrastructure challenges and opportunities.
Intermedia Arts, along with the city of Minneapolis’ Office of the City Coordinator, continues to expand the successful Creative CityMaking initiative across five city departments. This initiative fosters collaboration between local artists and city employees to develop fresh and innovative approaches to a broad range of local issues including transportation, land use, economic activity, environmental quality and civic engagement.
Who may apply?
U.S. 501(c)(3) organizations with audited financial statements that are not classified as private foundations. Audits must be independently prepared following Generally Accepted Accounting Principles or Government Auditing Standards. Financial statements prepared on a cash, modified cash, compilation or review basis do not qualify.
Examples of applicants include:
Anchor institutions in any sector that have a stake in and are located in a low-income disinvested community. Such organizations often have a longstanding presence, are large or small employers and operate or are located in a facility through either a long-term lease or direct ownership. These might include arts and cultural institutions of all disciplines and sizes, colleges and universities (four-year, community and minority-serving institutions), libraries, health clinics and human services agencies.
Nonprofit artist collaboratives.
Nonprofit community partners that serve as catalysts, intermediaries and/or funders of community-based revitalization, such as community development corporations, community foundations, financing agents such as credit unions and community development financial institutions and neighborhood associations.
Who may not apply?
Organizations that discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, sexual orientation or veteran status.
Organizations that require membership in certain religions or advance a particular religious faith. (Faith-based organizations may be eligible if they welcome and serve all members of the community regardless of religious belief.)
Programs operated to benefit for-profit organizations.
Who will be competitive?
Projects and organizations that:
Embed arts and culture in larger community revitalization initiatives.
Engage in cross-disciplinary, cross-sector activities.
Exhibit strong leadership.
Include artists and arts organizations.
Extend benefits to all stakeholders, especially low-income community members.
Demonstrate commitment to sustained engagement and empowerment of low-income residents.
Work to ensure current residents can remain in their community even where revitalization changes neighborhood economics.
Honor community distinctiveness.
We do not fund
Planning projects or stand-alone arts and cultural projects that benefit one organization, are on the periphery of a broader community revitalization project or have limited regard for place. Examples include:
Arts education and outreach activities.
One-time, community arts, public art or beautification projects not connected to a comprehensive community revitalization project.
Capital campaigns for cultural facilities or outdoor venues not connected to a comprehensive community revitalization project.
Economic and community development projects without consideration to history, character of the place and integration of the arts.
Neighborhood branding projects.
Projects where resident input is consultative or participation is limited to attendance.
Arts and social justice and engagement projects not connected to a larger revitalization strategy.
Our online-application system is off line until July 29, 2015.
We will accept and review inquiries on an ongoing basis through 2015. There are no deadlines.
We have a two-step application process that begins with an inquiry, submitted via an online application system.
Part 1, the preliminary application, contains a data-entry component and several attachments, including a narrative.
If the activity you describe fits one or more of our strategic priorities and our budget, we then request additional information. This will constitute Part 2 of the application process