The Arts Matter!

40 Years of More Art

M-AAA Selected for NEH on the Road Contract

Houston Endowment Awards Program Grant to M-AAA

M-AAA Strategic Planning

Kansas: Ensuring Access to the Arts

New M-AAA Board Members

Thank You for Your Support

Performing Arts Grants - January 2012

Southern Exposure Survey

Explore Our Exhibitions

Conference Opportunity

The Arts Matter!
Remember a time in your life where the arts inspired, motivated, surprised, or changed you?
We are dedicated to making those moments happen for more people from all walks of life, and hope you will join us in supporting
more art for more people by investing in continued excellence in performing and visual arts throughout the region.

Explore Our Exhibitions
(all exhibitions close January 7, 2012 unless otherwise noted)

The Bison: American Icon, Comanche National Museum & Cultural Center, Lawton, OK.

ˇCarnaval!, Burke Museum of Natural History & Culture, Seattle, WA.

Farm Life: A Century of Change for Farm Families and Their Neighbors, Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History, Bryan, TX.

Grassroots: African Origins of American Art, American Heritage Museum of Southern Jersey, Williamstown, NJ.

Linedrives and Lipstick: The Untold Story of Women's Baseball, Wyoming State Archives & Museum, Cheyenne, WY.

Fine Art of Jazz, Wichita (KS) Public Library.

Flow, Krasl Art Center, St. Joseph, MI.

Going Places, Brigham City (UT) Museum Gallery.

1968 in America, Boulder (CO) History Museum, closes 12/15/2011.

Our Lives, Our Stories, Charlotte (NC) Museum of History.

Our People, Our Land, Our Images, Mari Sandoz High Plains Heritage Center, Chadron, NE.

Wild Land, Thomas Cole, and the Birth of American Landscape Painting, Stedman Art Gallery, Rutgers in Camden, NJ.

Wrapped in Pride: Ghanaian Kente and African American Identity, Fort Wayne (IN) Museum of Art.

For more information, please visit,, or contact Client Relations at

Arts Reach Conference Opportunity
Arts Reach: The Association of Arts Management, Marketing and Development Professionals Conference will be held March 16-18 in New York City. Constituents of Mid-America Arts Alliance are entitled to a $150 registration discount. In addition, if you register before January 31, Arts Reach is offering a "buy one get one free" registration - when one person from your organization registers by January 31 at the $150 discounted rate, another person gets to go for FREE. Each additional delegate is $99. This year's conference theme is "Strengthening Your Patron Relationships," focused on creating strongers, closer, more lasting relationships. Click here for more information.

M-AAA Welcomes New Board Members
At their recent meeting in Fort Worth, Texas, the Mid-America Board of Directors welcomed three new members:

< Kim Baker, Executive Director, Oklahoma Arts Council
Alison Ferring, artist and civic leader, St. Louis, Missouri
< Harriet Kelley, collector and civic leader, San Antonio, Texas

Learn more: View the entire Board of Directors and Advisory Board members lists.

Celebrating Forty Years of More Art
In 1972, a group of civic leaders from four Midwestern states came together to envision an organization that ensured access to arts of excellence for people in the Mid-America region. Out of this initial collaboration, Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA) emerged and developed as the first regional arts organization in the country.

Today, our programs reach communities of all sizes and types, helping to generate overall cultural and economic health in our region and everywhere our programs appear. Join us in 2012 as we celebrate our 40th anniversary through a variety of activities throughout the region! We are proud to collaborate with you - artists, arts and culture organizations, arts educators, patrons, and friends of the arts - and invite you to learn more about the many ways we support "more art for more people."

M-AAA to Continue
NEH on the Road
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) awarded a $2.1 million contract to Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA) to continue NEH on the Road, an innovative program that scales large NEH exhibitions to tour to small-to-midsize organizations throughout the United States. This program, operated by M-AAA through a cooperative agreement with the NEH since 2005, helps fulfill the NEH goal of nurturing America’s intellectual and civic life.

Learn more: Click here to read the press release. For more information about NEH on the Road, please visit

M-AAA Receives $1.4 Million Grant to Serve
Houston Arts Organizations
Houston Endowment Inc. has awarded a three-year, $1,410,000 program grant to M-AAA to fund a unique project designed to build the governance, planning, resource development, and civic engagement capacities of small-to-midsize arts and culture institutions in the greater Houston area. Called ENGAGE Houston, this program will help staff and board members of 30 of Houston’s urban arts and culture organizations to build a strong web of cultural leadership in Houston and empower those institutions to strengthen and sustain themselves and their community for the future. Stay tuned for more details about ENGAGE!

Mid-America staff receiving recognition from the Board of Directors
Mid-America staff receiving recognition from the Board of Directors

Looking to the Future:
M-AAA Strategic Planning
At its recent meeting in Fort Worth, Texas, the M-AAA Board of Directors formally approved an updated Goals and Strategies document as part of the strategic planning process. These goals and strategies were the result of many months of work by our Board and staff with each other, our constituents, and the general public to ensure that our efforts - both now and in the future - are appropriate for the needs of the communities we serve. M-AAA staff has also formally implemented a set of Core Values that we believe best describes how we choose to work and to conduct ourselves as representatives of the organization. We are very proud to share both documents, and welcome your input and feedback about them. In the coming months, we will begin implementation of some new programs, and roll out improvements and enhancements to existing programs as we continue to strive to provide more art for more people.

Learn More: Click to view the M-AAA Goals and Strategies document, and/or click to view the M-AAA Staff Core Values document.

Kansas: Ensuring Access to Arts
With the loss of its state arts agency and therefore its partnership with Mid-America Arts Alliance, Kansas arts organizations, cultural institutions, and artists are no longer able to access grants, subsidies and travel stipends from Mid-America. However, we and others in the arts community remain committed to ensuring that these organizations are able to access funds whenever possible. In this spirit, we are sharing this important message from the National Endowment for the Arts:

"The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) welcomes applications from Kansas arts organizations and other nonprofits that seek support for projects representing a wide variety of artistic disciplines. The fact that the Kansas Arts Commission is currently ineligible to receive a State Partnership grant from the Arts Endowment does not disqualify Kansas arts organizations and nonprofits from applying directly to the Endowment for support.

We encourage organizations to check the NEA’s website for information on upcoming grant opportunities and deadlines. The FY13 Grants for Arts Projects Guidelines will be posted in January 2012. To explore grant opportunities, click on the artistic discipline that is most relevant for your project. We encourage Kansas applicants to speak with a discipline specialist in advance of submitting an application; staff contact information is provided for each discipline.

The NEA is partnering with the Kansas Department of Education during the 2011–2012 school year to provide Kansas high school students the opportunity to compete in Poetry Out Loud, a national poetry recitation contest. Created through a partnership between the National Endowment of the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, this program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage through the recitation of poetry.

The NEA has a history of supporting Kansas arts organizations and we want to be sure that the artistic assets and cultural heritage of Kansas continue to be recognized by the NEA. Please check the NEA website for news and grant guidelines."

If you are an organization outside of Kansas offering funding opportunities for which Kansas arts organizations may qualify, we invite you to share that information with us so we may forward it on to interested parties.

Thank You for Your Support
We are pleased to announce the following new grants and gifts from our generous funders:

  • Cooper Foundation, Lincoln, NE, $25,000 to support M-AAA operations
  • Houston Endowment Inc., Houston, TX, $1,410,000 to support ENGAGE Houston
  • John Steele Zink Foundation, Broken Arrow, OK, $2,500 to support Oklahoma arts and culture activities
  • Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation, Kansas City, MO, $15,000 to support M-AAA operations

We value our partners in helping to carry out our mission of strengthening communities and improving lives through extraordinary cultural experiences. Through the financial assistance of contributors such as these, our representative state arts agencies and national partners (the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services), we are able to supply programs that broaden and deepen the arts experiences of the communities we serve.

Note: Congress has extended legislation allowing senior citizens to make Charitable IRA Rollovers with no tax consequence to qualified charities through December 31, 2011. Contact your financial advisor for details and more information.

Performing Arts Grants Cycle to Open in January 2012
Artists and presenters, it's time to start planning! New program guidelines for our performing arts grant opportunities, Community Engagement with Touring Artists (CETA) and Regional Touring Program (RTP), will be announced in January 2012. In addition, travel stipends are now available for those wishing to attend the upcoming Association of Performing Arts Presenters Conference.

Artists: in order to be considered for RTP funding, you must be listed on both your state’s touring artist roster and the M-AAA Artists’ Registry. Former Kansas Arts on Tour Roster Artists should contact M-AAA staff regarding their eligibility.Questions? Contact us!

For more information on M-AAA performing arts grants and travel stipends, please click here. For a list of FY2011 performing arts grantees, please click here.

Southern Exposure: Connecting Artists and Presenters
Attention, performing arts presenters! Our sister Regional Arts Organization, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation is providing an opportunity to connect presenters interested in presenting performing artists from Latin America through the Southern Exposure program via a brief survey. The survey will provide valuable information for presenting organizations that have already identified an artist or ensemble for a Southern Exposure project and are seeking consortium partners as well as for those presenters looking to participate in a project. The survey, which takes less than five minutes to complete, can be found here. The deadline for submission is Friday, December 16, 2011. The information gleaned from the survey will be available on the Foundation's website at in early January 2012.

Detailed information on Southern Exposure can be found in the program's guidelines. Questions should be directed to Adam Bernstein, Deputy Director, Programs.
Southern Exposure will support projects that are developed collaboratively by presenter consortia based in the United States and its territories that include public performances and complementary activities intended to build appreciation for the artists' work and cultures. The program will invest in projects in which the presenting organizations work with a variety of community partners to offer the public opportunities for significant engagement with the visiting artists.

The application receipt deadline for the 2012-2013 Southern Exposure program is February 10, 2012. Program guidelines and the application are available here.

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