News and Insights

Native Arts for Social Change


T. Lulani Arquette, Guest Contributor | The Native Arts & Cultures Foundation has a passion and talent for bringing exceptional artists together before diverse audiences to share their insightful work and inspire the spirit. In October, NACF organized three sessions with a total of seven Native artists and changemakers at two philanthropy conferences. All the sessions were well attended and received high comments from many participants. In one session, a few people were wiping tears from their eyes, and in another, the audience was rocking to the beats of a performing artist. In all sessions, questions and comments from attendees revealed their desire to know more and how they had been deeply impacted by the stimulating presentations. more »

Virtual Roundtable: Arts Funders


Our "virtual roundtable" interviews feature a group of leaders from across our network who work on a common issue area, illuminating the diversity of place-based approaches to the topic at hand. We kicked this series off in February with the CEOs of five healthcare conversion foundations, then continued in March with the seven leaders of the Pacific Northwest's statewide nonprofit associations. For April, Philanthropy Northwest discussed arts funding in our region with four of our network's leaders, representing The Boeing Company, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, Nesholm Family Foundation and Rasmuson Foundation. more »

Creating Policy Change With Culture Change


Remy Trupin, Catalyst Fellow | As a policy wonk, my conference experience over the past 20 years has not included much visual, dramatic and musical artistry. This vibrant mixture of artists, activists and academics made Citizen University’s National Conference a compelling experience. Billed as a “conference like no other,” the event drew 500 participants to Seattle last month, including Seattle Foundation as a major sponsor, focused on accelerating civic participation and answering the question, "Who Is Us?" Our national discourse has heightened and intensified our focus on race, income inequality and identity issues. Changing demographics, shifting understanding of identity and rapid economic changes all support the need for reinvigorated civic participation. But while current events were never entirely absent from the discussion, the overwhelming focus was on the horizon. more »

Supporting the Arts Strengthens Our Communities


Susan M. Coliton, Philanthropy Northwest, and Sarah Sidman, ArtsFund | Cultural organizations play a critical role in creating a vibrant, thriving economy and an engaged and connected population. ArtsFund recently published its fifth Economic Impact Study of arts, cultural and scientific organizations in the central Puget Sound region, examining 2014 fiscal year data from 313 cultural nonprofits — including dance, festival, heritage, interdisciplinary, music, science, theater, visual arts and arts service organizations — and surveys from more than 3,500 patrons. The findings are clear: cultural organizations significantly contribute to both economic and community development. more »