Public art grants program awards total more than $1.2M for Pa. cities

     Bird’s eye view at night of Reading, Pennsylvania. (<a href=Photo by Dennis via Flickr Creative Commons) " title="reading_pa_night_1200" width="640" height="360"/>

    Bird’s eye view at night of Reading, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Dennis via Flickr Creative Commons)

    A public art collaborative in Reading is the most recent recipient of an Our Town grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Other Pennsylvania recipients include organizations in Scranton, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Bethlehem and Lansdowne.

     

    Reading is getting $75,000 for public art downtown through the National Endowment for the Arts’ Our Town funding program.

    The money will go toward The Downtown Reading Placemaking Project, which aims to foster interaction, and enhance and develop community identity through public art, according to a statement released Monday by the NEA.

    Multi-media art exhibit THIS IS READING was the project’s first initiative. The installation tells the stories of Reading residents through live performance, sound and visual media.

    Reading’s GoggleWorks Center for the Arts won a $25,000 Our Town grant in 2012.

    This year, Conneaut Lake in Allegheny County also is getting $75,000 for public art installations adjacent to the Water Street business district.

    Since 2010, Pennsylvania-based organizations have received 11 grants totaling $1.2 million through the Our Town program, which gives money to initiatives that use art to benefit a community’s land-use, transportation, education, housing, infrastructure, and public safety.

    The only states that have received more are California ($2.4 million) and Texas ($1.4 million).

    NEA has granted nearly $26 million nationwide in amounts between $25,000 and $250,000 during the past four years. The total distrubtion in 2014 is $5 million to 66 recipients, according to the NEA website.

     

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