Seattle Tops Denver, Again, via Arts Partner Roster

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Denver art

Denver art

As if crushing the Broncos in the Super Bowl wasn’t enough, Seattle has bested Denver once again. A recent rating by the social media website declares Seattle #2 and Denver #5 in their list of the nation’s 10 Best Cities to be an Artist.


Atlanta art

#1 is Atlanta, which I’m guessing is only because their cost of living is lower than Seattle’s.

In describing Seattle’s ranking, MyLife writes “…the city known for tossing fish and angry Seahawks, had good reason to come in at number two on our list. Despite ranking 40th in cost of living, it more than made up for that by ranking fifth and fourth in percent of its population that are between the ages of 20-34, and in number of galleries and museums, respectively.” Angry Seahawks? I suspect all NFL players get angry at some point.

Seattle art

Seattle art

Of the many reasons Seattle scored so well in this ranking, I believe one of the more compelling is Seattle’s Creative Advantage arts education program.

In 2008, the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (OAC) and the Seattle Arts Commission established a partnership with Seattle Public Schools (SPS) to build capacity to make quality arts education accessible to every student, especially in less affluent communities and communities of color. Increased capacity was needed to kick-start systemic change and overcome a long history of unequal access. At the time, award-winning arts programs existed in some schools, while others had little or no arts.

In 2011, The Wallace Foundation awarded the Seattle School District a $1 million arts education planning grant. The resulting work from that grant lead to a comprehensive K-12 arts plan aimed at increasing quality arts education for all students in the district.

Today, OAC, in collaboration with SPS, is on track to create an Arts Partner Roster of teaching artists and community arts and culture organizations that can be hired for providing services to the Creative Advantage. The roster will be a resource for schools seeking artists and organizations to help meet their education and community goals.

It will be active from April 2014 to April 2017. Teaching artists and community arts and culture organizations accepted onto the roster are approved for a four-year period, contingent on submission of an update at the halfway mark.

The deadline for applying is Tuesday, March 4, 2014, by 11 p.m.

You can read the guidelines and access the online application here.

OAC plans to host workshops on the application process and on the program itself:

Tuesday, February 11, 6 – 8 p.m.
2100 Building
2100 24th Ave S., Seattle, WA 98144

Via social media:
Thursday, February 13, 1 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Tweet @SeaOfficeofArts or #ArtsEdRoster with your questions

For information on the program, contact Lara Davis in OAC at 206-615-1879. For questions about the online application, call OAC’s main line at 206-684-7171.

The Creative Advantage is just one of many reasons our city is a great one for artists. Check out more reasons at the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture.

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