|The NAC and Its Mission
The Newark Arts Council was created to advance and expand the artistic and cultural resources of the City of Newark, New Jersey.
The agency provides leadership, direction, and technical assistance through partnerships with Newark's many artists, arts administrators, community organizations, community development corporations, planning groups, economic development agencies, and the general public.
Our goal is to share resources, promote advocacy efforts, assist in audience development and public awareness of arts and culture, and to serve as a cultural resource to the community.
The Mission of the Newark Arts Council: The Newark Arts Council brings the transformative power of the arts into the lives of those who live in, work in, and visit Newark through programs, advocacy, promotion, education, and coordination.
Programs of the Newark Arts Council include:
Website & Information Services
NAC has continued to publish—and to improve—its hallmark publication, the NewarkArts newsletter, a principal way that many across the state learn what’s happening in the greater Newark arts scene, and augmented it with a wonderful website, www.NewarkArts.org, that showcases the work of individual artists. NewarkArts quarterly cultural calendar provides the area’s only comprehensive listing of arts events occurring throughout the tri-county region.
Neighborhood Arts Programming
Via the NAC ArtStart Grants Program, NAC has made nearly 80 grants, ranging from $500–$4000, to stimulate arts and cultural activity in the city’s neighborhoods and it local schools and to provide direct funding to individual artists. These innovative programs take the arts into locations that are often overlooked by traditional programs. Over seven years, NAC has awarded nearly $225,000 in grants to 80 local arts groups and artists.
Open Doors: Open Artists Studios & Available Space Tour
In November 2002, NAC hosted the first Open Space Studio Tour to create awareness of Newark’s burgeoning visual and performing artists’ communities. The Tour was viewed as a means for artists who had been working in obscurity to open their studios to the public and to show the tremendous depth and diversity of art being created in this community. The Studio Tour has expanded with more locations and more artists participating throughout the downtown arts community. The Tour also boasts a large number of artists from across New Jersey and from Manhattan and Brooklyn being attracted by collaborative exhibitions between the communities.
Arts Education/Arts Learning
The Newark Art Council arts education initiative is designed for school administrators, school leadership teams, classroom teachers, artists, and community leaders who play an active role in the design and implementation of educational policy within local schools.
In collaboration with the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership and the Lincoln Center Institute, The Newark Arts Council presents a series of Professional Development workshops specifically designed for a broad spectrum of artists including entrepreneurial artists, teaching artists, and art teachers to encourage, promote, train and hone knowledge, behavior and skills needed in a 21st Century workforce.
Additionally, Newark Arts Council produces a Teaching Artist Directory: a resource for all schools and community-based organizations (CBO’S) in the City of Newark, New Jersey. Any public school, charter, independent and/or CBO may review the information on the NAC website and downloadable PDF and select teaching artists to work with, using school and CBO funds. Artists in this directory have received training related to a variety of pedagogies such as arts integration and NJDOE Core Curriculum Content Standards (CCCS) standards for the visual and performing arts.
Arts & Economic Prosperity
NAC is a leader in producing information on the economic impact of the arts in Newark and the state and getting that information into the hands of government and business leaders who determine allocation of resources. In 2006, NAC partnered with Americans for the Arts (AFTA) to replicate the benchmark economic impact study first conducted in 2001.
Through research and feasibility studies conducted by the NAC private developers have recognized the need for artists-specific housing in the city and are developing artists live/work spaces in Newark and in other areas of Essex County with other renewed efforts being considered in Newark. NAC maintains a resource list of available spaces for artists on its website and publishes a weekly update.
The New Jersey State Council on the Arts has recognized the NAC with a Citation of Excellence acknowledging its efforts to support local and statewide artists via the Artists’ Studios and Available Space Tour. The Citation noted the NAC exhibits the highest standards of excellence in its artistry, operations, governance, public benefit and fulfillment of areas of Council priority.
© 2010 Newark Arts Council