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Houston Arts Alliance Organization Name provided in the GuideStar Exchange* as of 08/20/2014: Houston Arts Alliance

Organization Name as listed in the IRS Business Master File as of 08/11/2014: HOUSTON ARTS ALLIANCE

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AKA  HAA
Houston, TX
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GuideStar Summary

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&1002; Forms 990 2012, 2011, and 2010 Forms 990 filed with the IRS
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&1002; Impact Summary Impact Summary from the nonprofit is available
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Basic Organization Information

Houston Arts Alliance Organization Name provided in the GuideStar Exchange* as of 08/20/2014: Houston Arts Alliance

Organization Name as listed in the IRS Business Master File as of 08/11/2014: HOUSTON ARTS ALLIANCE

* The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
Also Known As: HAA
Physical Address: Houston, TX 77019 1800
EIN: 74-1946756
Web URL: www.houstonartsalliance.com 
NTEE Category: A Arts, Culture, and Humanities
A26 Arts Council/Agency
A Arts, Culture, and Humanities
A26 Arts Council/Agency
Year Founded: 1977 
Ruling Year: 1978 


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Mission Statement

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit arts organization that exists to enhance the quality of life and tourism in the Houston region by supporting and promoting the arts through programs, initiatives and alliances. HAA distributes over $3 million in grants to approximately 220 nonprofit arts organizations and individual artists. In addition, HAA manages the city's civic art collection of 450 artworks, as well as new acquisitions.

Legitimacy Information

This organization is registered with the IRS.

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Annual Revenue & Expenses (GuideStar Exchange,
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Fiscal Year Starting: July 1, 2014
Fiscal Year Ending: June 30, 2015

Total Revenue --
Total Expenses --

Revenue & Expenses

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Balance Sheet (IRS Form 990)

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Forms 990 Received from the IRS Additional Information
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Financial Statements

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Annual Reports

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Leadership (GuideStar Exchange,
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Mr. Jonathon Glus

Profile:

As Houston Arts Alliance’s first Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Glus provides strategic leadership for HAA’s 32 board members and 22 full-time staff members. In addition to his work with HAA, Mr. Glus is the vice chairman of the Culture and Tourism Collaborative of the Greater Houston Partnership; the vice president of the Texans for the Arts Board of Directors; and the Vice-Chair of the Executive Committee of the United States Urban Arts Federation (USUAF), an AFTA alliance of chief executives of the nation’s local arts agencies. Prior to his post in Houston, Mr. Glus served as the Executive Director of the Arts & Cultural Affairs Division of the City of Pasadena, California from 1999-2007. As the mayor’s cultural advisor, Mr. Glus’s direction led to the founding of a 10-year cultural development plan, Cultural Nexus (2005-2015). In addition, Mr. Glus managed Pasadena’s extensive private development of public arts programs; curated the city-owned public art collection; managed the giving of annual grants and on-going technical assistance programs for arts and culture organizations and artists; managed the city’s tourist programs including two biannual festivals and the triennial 16-venue, multidisciplinary Arts & Ideas Festival. Mr. Glus also conceptualized and developed international projects such as the Rachmaninoff International Piano Competition & Festival during his time in Pasadena. Prior to his work in California, Mr. Glus served as Executive Director for the Evanston Arts Council in metropolitan Chicago and as an Associate Curator and Exhibitions Coordinator at the International Sculpture Center in Washington, D.C. Mr. Glus’s master’s work was in art history at the University of Illinois, and his undergraduate work was in urban economics and public policy at Indiana University and the University of Kent, Canterbury, England.

Leadership Statement:

In 2006, the City of Houston established Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) to advance the diverse arts sector of the greater Houston community. Created through a merger of the Cultural Arts Council for Houston/Harris County (CACHH), the Municipal Art Commission, and the Civic Art Committee, HAA is the leading champion for the arts in Houston. HAA functions as a 501(c) 3 nonprofit entity that funds, advocates, preserves, promotes, and fosters the vibrant, creative arts community in the Houston and Harris County region. The indirect impact of HAA’s work reaches over four million people. Houston is home to more than 500 diverse arts and culture organizations. HAA seeks to empower, support and promote these nonprofits and countless multifarious independent artists. HAA nurtures Houston’s thriving creative community by: • providing more than 225 grants to nonprofit arts organizations and individuals each year • empowering arts organizations to become sustainable and reach new audiences through a variety of programs and services • commissioning art and artists’ works for public spaces • managing the city’s extensive public art collection • researching, documenting, and showcasing Houston’s rich folklife and cultures • cultivating business volunteers for the arts • educating the community about the power of art, culture, and the creative economy by providing much needed information on Houston’s cultural policies and economic development In a city known as the energy capital of the world, HAA believes there is a renewable energy source with limitless potential: creativity. Creativity is a catalyst. It sparks greater civic engagement in practical, philosophical, and entertaining ways. HAA champions artists who ignite this spark. Through direct funding, creative initiatives, and extraordinary partnerships, HAA is fueling a creative community of art-makers and audiences for a richly diverse 21st-century Houston.

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Board Leadership Practices (GuideStar Exchange,
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?

Board Orientation & Education ?
Why does this matter? Without clarity around their responsibilities and expectations, board members are not positioned to succeed. They may find themselves challenged to fulfill their governance responsibilities or frustrated by the expectations that the organization has set for them. BoardSource recommends that every new board member participate in a formal orientation process, and that all board members sign a pledge or agreement committing to their board service and to all of the responsibilities and expectations that come with service. Ideally, board members also should participate in a formal governance training program prior to serving on a board.

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?
Yes
CEO Oversight ?
Why does this matter? Oversight and management of the chief executive is one of the board’s most important legal responsibilities. The CEO or executive director is the board's single employee, and - just like any other employer/employee relationship - regular and written assessment is critical to ensuring that the chief executive and board are communicating openly about goals and performance. BoardSource recommends that boards conduct formal, written reviews of their chief executives on an annual basis, which should include an in-person discussion with the chief executive and distribution of the written evaluation to the full board.

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?
Yes
Ethics & Transparency ?
Why does this matter? A commitment to handling conflicts of interests is essential to creating an organizational culture of transparency. Boards should create and follow a policy for identifying and handling conflicts of interest, whether real or perceived. BoardSource recommends that organizations review the conflict-of-interest statement and require signed disclosures from all board members and senior staff on an annual basis.

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements within the past year?
Yes
Board Composition ?
Why does this matter? The best boards are composed of individuals who bring a variety of skills, perspectives, backgrounds, and resources to tackle the complex and strategic challenges confronting their organizations. BoardSource recommends that boards commit to diversity and inclusion by establishing written policies and practices, which include strategic and intentional recruitment of diverse board members, continual commitment to inclusivity, and equal access to board leadership opportunities.

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?
Yes
Board Performance ?
Why does this matter? Boards need to regularly assess their own performance. Doing so ensures that they are being intentional about how they govern their organization, which is a critical component of effective board leadership. BoardSource recommends that a board conduct a self-assessment of its performance a minimum of once every three years to ensure that it is staying on track with its roles and responsibilities.

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?
Yes

Officers for Fiscal Year (IRS Form 990)

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Highest Paid Employees & Their Compensation (IRS Form 990)

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People information was last updated by the nonprofit in August 2014

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Programs

Program: Civic Art and Design (GuideStar Exchange,
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August 2014)

Budget:
--
Category:
Visual Arts
Population Served:
None
None
None

Program Description:

HAA’s Civic Art + Design program, partnered with the City of Houston, maintains Houston’s civic art collection, commissions new works for temporary and permanent installation, and showcases regional artists’ works at the Alliance Gallery. Civic Art + Design provides dynamic ways for public, private, and community partners to engage directly in the placemaking of their city. Houston’s civic art heralds our curiosity, playfulness, and entrepreneurship, and the artworks demonstrate Houston’s cultural capital to visitors and tourists. Today’s commissions will speak to future generations of the endeavors we undertook on their behalf in creating a great place to live, work, and play.

Program Long-Term Success:

HAA commissions new works for Houston’s civic art collection such as "Tolerance" by James Plensa (Allen Pkwy. and Montrose Blvd.) and the Bush International and Hobby Airports’ installations. In addition, HAA’s Temporary Art Program (TAP) provides contemporary exhibitions outside the walls of museums and galleries. TAP is realized through partnerships with Houston’s custodians, as enhancing public spaces for cultural use requires a collaboration of designers, artists, architects, and the community. In the 21st century, facilitating platforms for cultural engagement is more important than commissioning static works. TAP is comprised of three focus areas: Portable On Demand Art (PODA) which delivers traveling exhibits beyond the center of Houston into our neighborhoods; The Witness Program which provides a platform for broad-based dialogue about contemporary civic art, space, and design; and The Masters Program, a tri-annual commission that brings world renowned artists to Houston’s unique public spaces.

Program Short-Term Success:

Through a plethora of collaborative partnerships, HAA’s TAP programs have brought a wide variety of art to Houston. In 2010, James Surls’ "Magnificent Seven" came to Houston’s Rice University campus. In 2011, Houston artists transformed PODS© containers into works of art – inside and out – for a traveling exhibition across greater Houston to outlying communities -- a program that will continue in 2014-2015 with P.O.D.A. 2.0. Also in 2011, HAA brought Houston Mark Dion’s "Invasive Plant Eradication Unit," an environmental resource vehicle that served as a beacon of public outreach, educating Houstonians about Buffalo Bayou’s invasive plant species. In 2012, Ai Weiwei’s twelve monumental bronze animal heads, "Circle of Animals" or alternatively, "Zodiac Heads," was showcased in Hermann Park. In 2013, Jo Ann Fleischhauer and Musiqa’s downtown Market Square Clock Tower installation "What Time Is It?" explored the relevancy of time’s physical marker in a digital age, and Konstantin Dimopoulous’ "The Blue Trees" of Houston/Galveston drew attention to the global impact of deforestation. These are just a few of the many projects Civic Art + Design produces outside of their year-round Alliance Gallery exhibitions.

Program Success Monitored by:

Testimonials: The Blue Trees utilized environmentally safe, vibrant blue pigment to color a grove of crape myrtles’ trunks on Allen Parkway and several other locations in Houston and Galveston. Australian sculptor and social artist Konstantin Dimopoulous explains that “the trees are like the lungs of the earth. This is like a very large picture painting… Blue doesn’t exist in trees. [The Blue Trees] tries to use the idea that it’s so unusual people stop to look… a transformation of a grove of trees into a magical kingdom.” Dimopoulous colored his blue trees alongside hundreds of Houston volunteers. On the installation day, HAA CEO Jonathon Glus commented: “This is viral. It is unbelievable who has come out: we have school teachers, children, neighborhood associations, artists from the community… it’s outstanding.” This work is particularly unique because it allowed the general public to participate in Houston placemaking. “Just making [art] is not enough; it’s like writing a book that no one reads, doing events that no one sees, writing a piece of music that no one hears. You have to show it … Houston, I think historically has a kind of ‘the sky is the limit’ attitude about it. My feeling coming here was if you couldn’t do it here, you really couldn’t do it,” says artist and native Texan James Surls. In partnership with Rice University, the City of Houston, and HAA, the Magnificent Seven installation of 2010 transformed Rice University into a canvas for Surls’ sculptures. The installation was shipped from NYC for its Houston exhibition. Surls comments, “It is a huge honor for me to have this work here. I think it will be a destination, and I think people will come from other places, here, specifically to see it – not even counting the people who come here from around the world.” “In my projects, I am always trying to emphasize the interior capabilities of humans,” says Spanish artist Jaume Plensa. In 2011, HAA worked with public and generous private donors to give Plensa’s Tolerance to Houston’s civic art collection. Tolerance is the group of 10-foot tall kneeling figures composed of multi-lingual metal letters set against the backdrop of the downtown skyline at Allen Parkway and Montrose Boulevard. “Tolerance means to dream of one world… it also means inspiration to live together in harmony… We have to explore ourselves from the inside first.” Mica Mosbacher, widow of former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Robert Mosbacher and wonderful supporter of this project, further explains this piece’s relevancy: "[Houston is] tolerant, we embrace other cultures; and in fact, those other cultures have been the engines of our healthy and prosperous economy. I hope that those who visit Tolerance on Harmony Walk contemplate what our city represents and will also focus on the value of each and every one of us as human beings."

Program Success Examples:

One of the most recent Civic Art + Design projects is the Art Recycling Trucks, produced in partnership with the City of Houston Solid Waste Management Department: Six Art Recycling Trucks, working City of Houston recycling trucks transformed into mobile artworks by local artists, are out on the streets! This innovative project celebrates City of Houston’s commitment to ‘going green,’ furthers Civic Art + Design’s placemaking mission, and showcases artworks by local artists Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola, CORE Design Studio, Aaron Muñoz, Troy Stanley, Ariane Roesch and Kia Neill. Between 2013-2014, SWMD drastically expanded its citywide Automated Curbside Recycling Program with the goal of providing single stream recycling services, over 640 square miles, to 380,000 homes. “The art wraps on the recycling trucks help draw public attention to the fact that these trucks are utilized in ‘repurposing’ materials that would otherwise be considered trash. Over the past several years, the City of Houston has made substantial progress in its recycling efforts. Having these trucks in the public arena helps to create awareness and participation in the program,” explains SWMD Director Harry Hayes. The ‘Wrap’ Process: Art Recycling Truck artists were strategically selected from a 2013 open call and by a panel of professional Houston artists. From this pool, six Houston artists were commissioned to produce artwork to be transferred onto six Automated Recycling Program vehicles. The original works of art featured on the vehicles, and smaller version of the designs, are now part of the City of Houston Municipal Art Collection. Kicking off the design process, artist Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola photographed a City of Houston recycling truck then digitally manipulated the photograph to create a white-washed, blank canvas version. SWMD then provided vector drawings and detailed dimensions of the truck. Utilizing Adobe Illustrator, 3D CAD renderings, and other methods, the artists broke their designs down into five panels. These panel designs were sent to A&E - The Graphics Complex who printed them on Controltac vinyl and applied them to the trucks by hand. Once ‘wrapped,’ the Art Recycling Trucks were immediately put to work, collecting recyclable materials from Houston residents’ homes. On Wednesday, August 13, 2014, the six Art Recycle Trucks were publically unveiled outside of The Houston Zoo at Hermann Park, then drove in procession around the Houston Museum District. About the Art Recycling Trucks and Artists: Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola’s "Green Dream" truck features a larger-than-life photograph of fig ivy, photographed by the artist in the Museum District. "Green Dream" debuted in April 2014 at Mayor Annise D. Parker’s Earth Day Breakfast. “This truck is a symbol of the beauty and significant value of nature. But, of course, it is so much more than that. It is in fact a subtle, moving message about my dream for an environmentally conscious community, yearning to fill its niche in the global struggle to maintain a more healthy planet.” - Pablo Gimenez-Zapiola CORE Design Studio’s "Patterns of Consumption" utilizes x-ray blueprints of recyclable materials in a harmonious mandala pattern, creating a visual metaphor of their environmental effects and memory burned into our landscape. "Patterns of Consumption" and "Green Dream" were featured in the 2014 Houston Art Car Parade. “Using the sun as our light source, we created cyanotype photographic prints (blueprints) of transparent recyclables from our recycle bin and from around our studio. Like a haunting x-ray, the resulting ghostly prints of these banal objects become a visual metaphor of their environmental effects and memory burned into our landscape. The mandala pattern, a ‘revelatory symbol of cosmic truths,’ became a natural means to organize and create harmonic beauty out of trash.” - CORE Design Studio Aaron Muñoz’s "Mad Tax Beyond the Astrodome" is informed by his previous work, "Paper Beats Rock and Hornet," imagining the recycling of Houston’s Astrodome with post-apocalyptic flare. “I have done other public art projects before and I enjoy the idea of bringing art to a public place where art can be viewed outside the norms of a gallery/museum setting. Vast amounts of people do not actively go out in search of art, so the chance to put up art where people are least expected to view it is a real exciting opportunity. My work deals with incorporating an ironic and sarcastic social commentary on the evolution of technology, science, and how humans put them to use. Through my printmaking and paintings I am able to explore the idea of security and safety, constructing images that give light to modern technology. I enjoy the use of opposing imagery, intermixing of innocent and non-threatening with the harmful and detrimental. In doing so, the work will reflect an ironic satire in which I can bring attention to contemporary issues.” - Aaron Muñoz Troy Stanley’s "Forest for the Trees" resembles a wooden toy truck. In composition, its nostalgic wood grain design is taken from photographs of his studio’s scrap wood materials. “I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about our environment and our relationship to and with it. We live within products that have been many times removed from their natural environment. Paper plates, cereal boxes, junk mail, lumber, furniture, shelves, and tissue paper permeate our everyday lives. Much too often we categorize these manifestations as only objects, commodity, and function. In a way I hoped this project could bring these everyday things back to its origin. Perhaps providing another way of seeing things as something from our childhood, a simple wooden truck could spawn a memory of when we began to look at the products in our environment as mere things. With the right kind of eye one can see the forests, the tree lines, hear the birds, walk in the shade, and remember when the leaves fall. One must be conscious of the origins of the everyday, that space in-between where a box is no longer just a box, but an entire ecosystem in a far off and fading landscape. We have to learn why we cannot see the forest for the things.” –Troy Stanley Ariane Roesch’s "I Have a Positive Impact" is a patchwork quilt of recycled materials left over from her previous projects—a culmination and dedication to her previous soft sculpture works. “I utilize various kinds of fabric to create my artwork. Felt, vinyl tablecloth, linen, cotton, etc. are all materials that are cut and sewn into various projects. For some reason, I like to keep the remaining pieces from the various projects. Since the Houston Arts Alliance project called for a specific piece for a recycle truck, I decided to recycle the scraps into a quilt - where the shape of the scrap determined placement. Each scrap holds the memory of a previous project, so the recycle truck piece is a wonderful culmination and dedication to all of my previous works.” - Ariane Roesch Kia Neill’s "Recycled City" employs the trompe-l'œil effect, depicting digitally manipulated photographs of steel I-beams mangled by Hurricane Ike. “My piece is a collage of photographs I took of some of the aftermath from Hurricane Ike. The gnarled I-beams and metal sheeting made me think of the inner workings of the recycle truck itself, and I also liked pairing the act of recycling with that of the city turning itself around after such a natural disaster.” – Kia Neill

Program: Programs and Services (GuideStar Exchange,
The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
August 2014)

Budget:
--
Category:
None
Population Served:
None
None
None

Program Description:

HAA’s Programs + Services provide a myriad of resources for arts organizations, individual artists, and the general public. For example, HAA’s Capacity Building Initiative (CBI) strives to strengthen the management capabilities of arts organizations so they may grow, thrive, and deploy their resources effectively and responsibly; Business Volunteers for the Arts (BVA) is a pro bono consulting program that connects skilled business professionals with nonprofit arts organizations in need of high-level business assistance; and Artshound.com is a comprehensive online calendar of arts and culture events in the Houston region, free to the public. HAA also provides access to Arts Database Management, PatronManager, and Power2give.org. In addition, HAA engages in collaborative research studies to provide much-needed information on cultural policy, economic development, and audience building for the vast array of arts organizations and individuals in the Houston region.

Program Long-Term Success:

In Fall 2014, HAA will expand its Arts & Business Council of Greater Houston (A&BC) by launching three new programs: Board Leadership in the Arts, Financial Training & Services, and Leadership Engagement Forum. A&BC is a membership organization comprised of business and civic leaders, overseen by an advisory council, tasked with forming partnerships between Houston’s private sector and the arts. Through leadership focused on stimulating volunteerism, financial support, sharing of knowledge, best practices, and management expertise, A&BC serves as a vital link between business and the arts. A&BC programs will produce effective, well-trained board members ready to be matched up with arts organizations that have met HAA’s strict qualifications for program participation. In addition, HAA will conduct interviews and surveys throughout the first year of A&BC graduate placement in order to measure the effectiveness of the programs.

Program Short-Term Success:

HAA’s Programs + Services are exceedingly successful, including the Capacity Building Initiative (CBI) and The Creative Economy of Houston study. CBI works with arts organizations of all sizes at all stages of development offering workshops, tutorials, lectures, funding opportunities, and office space to participants. CBI’s mission is to strengthen the management capabilities of arts organizations so they may grow, thrive, and deploy their resources effectively and responsibly. Also a great HAA success is The Creative Economy of Houston: A Comprehensive Study of Creative Sector Industries and Their Impact on the Houston Economy, a report commissioned by HAA and the University of Houston analyzing Houston’s creative economy and comparing Houston’s creative-business sector with those across America. The study reveals a compelling view of Houston as a city of great creative activity, a story of a city of the rise in creative economy output with the potential to grow tremendously – with the right investments.

Program Success Monitored by:

Program Success Examples:

Testimonials: Jennifer Decker, artistic director of Mildred’s Umbrella Theatre Co. and Capacity Building Initiative (CBI) participant, reflects on her experience with CBI: “The support and education in all areas of arts administration has been so valuable to our company. Our budget has already grown and our board and staff have a much better understanding of their responsibilities in just eight months. Being in the program with four other arts groups is wonderful because we are able to share information, contacts, and experiences with one another that improve the experience for all of us. The administrative funds and the use of an office have improved our company 100%.” The husband-wife team and founders of Stark Naked Theatre Co. and CBI Incubator participants Philip Lehl and Kim Tobin comment: “Our ticketing/patron management/email system PatronManager was adopted by several companies that we knew of, so when we saw it in action and qualified for a grant to implement it, we jumped at it and use it happily today. We continue to be amazed at the plethora of opportunities available to us through these programs and are grateful for the knowledge that we are gaining every day.” HAA’s Business Volunteers for the Arts (BVA), a component of the Arts & Business Council (A&BC), is a pro bono consulting program that connects skilled business professionals with nonprofit arts organizations in need of high-level business assistance. To facilitate these connections, HAA hosts a BVA monthly happy hour at Sorrel Bistro every first Wednesday. BVA participant Joe Dilg, Partner at Vinson & Elkins and HAA Advisory Council Co-Chair, explains: “While HAA has done a great job with the Grants and Civic Art + Design programs funded through municipal funding, the organization has developed the infrastructure and talent to do much more for our City by serving as the leading advocate for the arts generally in the City and providing much needed non-monetary support and guidance for our smaller arts organizations. I have been pleased to see HAA revitalize the BVA program that matches volunteers from our business community willing to provide pro bono consulting services with arts organizations which could benefit from those services. This provides a great opportunity for our employees who want to get actively engaged in our community to efficiently and effectively do so.” Published in July 2012, "The Creative Economy of Houston: A Comprehensive Study of Creative Sector Industries and Their Impact on the Houston Economy" garnered state-wide attention. At the Hobby Center press conference, Mayor Annise Parker commented that “the business of Houston is business, and our eyes are always on the bottom line… While we knew we were an arts destination and really making our mark on the international map as an arts city, the overall creative economy is much, much larger and has a much bigger impact, not just in Houston, but in the surrounding area…We tend to focus on the arts non-profits when we think about the creative economy. This study takes us beyond those non-profits out into the business side of the creative economy…Houston’s economy has proven to be a constant and sturdy force to be reckoned with, and ‘The Creative Economy Study’ results reinforces that the best is yet to come.” Patrick Jankowski, Vice President of Research at the Greater Houston Partnership, championed the study saying, “Houston is too often seen as a town of analysts, manufacturers and engineers who drill holes in the ground. It helps complete the picture.”

Program: Grants (GuideStar Exchange,
The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
August 2014)

Budget:
--
Category:
None
Population Served:
None
None
None

Program Description:

Grants are a fundamental means of promoting excellence in the creative sector. On behalf of the City of Houston, HAA distributes more than 255 grants to nonprofit arts organizations and individual artists annually. To advance the creation and expression of art that reflects Houston’s cultural diversity, HAA works to fund broadly and deeply. The breadth of HAA’s reach not only extends to music, theatre, dance, visual arts, cinema, literary arts, folk arts, and photography, but HAA also provides opportunities for cultural centers, heritage associations, and festivals. Grant applicants are considered by external peer review panels composed of artists, arts administrators, and financial and business professionals selected for their expertise and objectivity. HAA also invests in capacity building for arts organizations that aspire to grow, providing knowledge and organizational development through best practices and mentorship. HAA grantees impact Houstonians and visitors alike in surprising and sublime ways.

Program Long-Term Success:

Nonprofit organization applicants may apply to the General Operating Support/Expansion Program (GOS/E), which funds cultural programs that attract Houston visitors and meet the needs of culturally diverse Houston residents; HAA’s Arts Marketing Grant provides additional funding to GOS/E grantees; the Arts Project Grant funds cultural projects open to the public; the Touring + Neighborhood Arts Program supports touring programs outside the City but within Harris County; and the City's Initiative Program funds marketing and artistic costs for projects outside of applicants’ regular programming. Individual artists may apply to Individual Artist Grant (IAG) Program, which supports and develops new works by Houston artists; the 2014 IAG-Folk Arts Fellowship supports master traditional artists’ efforts to preserve artistic traditions through apprenticeship; and the 2014 AIG-Portable On Demand Art Program invites artists to create unique installations on the theme of sustainability.

Program Short-Term Success:

In FY14, HAA distributed over $3 million to 145 grant recipients. Among these recipients are Houston’s Project Row House, NobleMotion Dance, and FotoFest. The Third Ward’s Project Row House (PRH) transforms their community through celebrations of art, and African-American history and culture. PRH programs include gallery exhibitions, public art and festivals, property renovation, education, and a Young Mothers Residential program. NobleMotion Dance produces daring works that inspire discourse and understanding amongst diverse communities. NobleMotion uniquely integrates technology with dance, hosts master classes, post-show discussions, open rehearsals, and offers residency opportunities. FotoFest is a Houston-based international photographic arts and education nonprofit, promoting the cross-cultural exchange of art and ideas. FotoFest programs include a biennial festival, exhibitions, international exchange, publications, and grades 3-12 education including Literacy Through Photography.

Program Success Monitored by:

Program Success Examples:

Testimonials: NobleMotion Dance is recognized as a Houston “A-list” dance company for their “extraordinary athleticism” and “cutting edge” programming. As a CBI and grant recipient, co-Artistic Director Andy Nobel explains that NobleMotion is “really gathering some steam. The HAA incubator program has been incredibly helpful. We now have an office with staff and are putting together a really special team of people that will help propel the organization to the next level. Artistically, we are excited that we are creating and offering our dancers more consistent work this year.” In addition, this spring NobleMotion Dance launched a two-year collaborative relationship with contemporary music group Musiqa, which is also a HAA grant recipient. Their partnership exemplifies HAA’s mission to strengthen the arts through alliances and collaborations. Musiqa and NobleMotion’s first original project, Harvest, was an old-world dance in a contemporary setting that “looks at social justice in warring countries. Stark, ritualistic, and dramatic, the dance feels of an older time,” Nobel explains. NobleMotion and Musiqa’s second collaborative project premiered in spring of 2015. The 2014 biennial FotoFest, "View From Inside: Contemporary Arab Photography, Video, and Mixed Media Art," presented approximately 700 works by 50 artists at the Winter, Silver, and Spring Street Studios, as well as the Galleria’s Williams Tower Gallery. FotoFest Co-founder Fred Baldwin explains that “to have the largest exhibition of Arab art in the southern United States arrive here in our city is a major deal. There is a large Arab community here in Houston… and this [FotoFest] is an indicator that we recognize not only our own Arab community, but that we are bringing something from North Africa and the Arab countries in the Middle East, 13 of them, to Houston. It’s a celebration.” Artistic Director Wendy Watriss expounds: "Many people don't understand how worldly, self-analytical, and sophisticated Arab cultures are. This is an extremely smart, extremely cultured part of the world that has been central to human history for thousands of years and has experienced both enormous presence and struggle. It's a world that, in a sense, contains everything. If you're a person who's curious about the world, it's impossible not to be curious about the Arab world.” HAA’s Board of Directors are deeply committed to supporting HAA and the arts in Houston: “Over the next decade there is an opportunity to transform Houston by bringing art into our everyday experiences, and HAA is primed to be a leader in that effort.” -Brad Bucher “I am involved with this organization because I want to be among those who have a positive impact on making our city a great place to work and, most importantly, to live.” - Fabené Welch “One of the things I am most interested in is helping this city and HAA become recognized as a national and international cultural arts community because of the diversity and attractions we have.” – Philamena Baird

Program: Folklife and Traditional Arts (GuideStar Exchange,
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August 2014)

Budget:
--
Category:
Folklife & Traditional Arts
Population Served:
None
None
None

Program Description:

HAA’s Folklife + Traditional Arts program promotes, supports, documents, and presents Houston’s lively cultural traditions through strategic collaborations and shared research initiatives. There is a breathtaking range of culture in our region. Houston’s richly diverse communities and neighborhoods make our city one of the most vibrant urban landscapes in America. The Folklife program highlights this diversity, promoting the artistic heritage of Houston’s established communities and the remarkably rich traditions of new immigrants with Houston visitors and locals alike. HAA’s Folklife program celebrates and showcases our communities’ music, dance, crafts, arts, storytelling, ethnic heritages, languages, and faiths, while providing technical assistance and resources to local, traditional artists.

Program Long-Term Success:

The Folklife + Traditional Arts program’s numerous past events have engaged a wide array of attendees and successfully celebrated and showcased Houston’s many contemporary and traditional cultures for many years. For example, HAA’s Voices of the Spirit concert series, which celebrates devotional music from Houston’s diverse immigrant communities, enjoyed its fourth annual performance last February. In 2013 alone, in partnership with various organizations, HAA presented a range of diverse Houston musical traditions at the Bayou City Art Festival titled Local Roots, Global Culture; the SLAB Parade + Family Festival showcasing local African-American vehicle arts and culture; and launched Remembered, Regained: Immigrant Arts of Houston, which included numerous workshops, panel discussions, lectures, and exhibitions throughout 2013, closing with the Anointed and Adorned: Indian Weddings in Houston exhibition at the Alliance Gallery.

Program Short-Term Success:

In September of 2014, two exciting Folklife + Traditional Arts program projects will commence. The first, "Stories of a Workforce: Celebrating the Centennial of the Houston Ship Channel," is a major multimedia exhibition showcasing the diverse culture, heritage, and lore associated with the Port of Houston and Houston Ship Channel. Presented in partnership with the Houston Public Library, "Stories of a Workforce" explores human experiences of Houston’s great hidden engine of prosperity through worker interviews augmented by photos, audio, and video installations. "Stories of a Workforce: Celebrating the Centennial of the Houston Ship Channel" is an effort to make the Port of Houston better seen, better heard, and better known to the massive community that depends on it. The Port of Houston is the great hidden engine of the city’s prosperity. It is hard to imagine an economic and occupational landmark of such size and importance, and yet so well concealed, as the Port of Houston.The exhibition is driven by interviews and stories collected through the Library of Congress-funded Working the Port project. Working the Port has documented the voices of the men and women who have made their living in the many occupations and industries found along the Ship Channel. From shipboard to shore-side, from the loading docks to the board rooms, interviews with dock, rail, and oil industry workers, engineers and executives, merchant marines and marine biologists, environmental specialists and international traders, Stories of a Workforce: Celebrating the Centennial of the Houston Ship Channel captures and explores the human experience of this massive complex through the words and experiences of individuals. In addition, these stories will be augmented and animated by objects, photos, and interactive media. The second September 2014 project, Transported + Renewed, is an extensive placemaking project funded by the NEA Our Town grant. HAA is the only Texas recipient and is one of two organizations nationally to receive the full award. Transported + Renewed is a three month festival, presenting a bold mix of community-based art projects in Houston's historic East End. Transported + Renewed celebrates all forms of transport: tugs, ships, railroads, bicycles, art cars, trail rides, low riders, dragon boats, SLABs, food trucks, and more. Concerts, parades, rambles, and art galore - Transported + Renewed includes 23 free, family-friendly events.

Program Success Monitored by:

Program Success Examples:

Testimonials: In February 2014, HAA and the Asia Society of Texas Center championed Houston’s sacred music traditions in the fourth annual Voices of the Spirit concert. Many Houston communities create a sense of home through membership in churches, mosques, temples, and the like, fostering their faith-inspired musical traditions. Voices of the Spirit brings these diverse groups together to share musical expressions of their faith with a larger audience. Marcus Barnum, a founding member of 2014 musical guest The Soul Influence, explains that their A cappella gospel is “meant to express our spirituality…We've designed our group in such a way that we can speak to a wide audience… Music is music. It's the universal language. People can understand the message even if they don't understand the language. Music can speak in a way that just words can't." Additional 2014 musical guests included the Buddhist nuns of Chung Mei Temple and third-generation Hindu musician Pandit Suman Ghosh. Whether through chant, intoned praise, syncopated four-part harmonies, or devotional ragas, each tradition voiced its unique spirituality through a distinctive musical style with a long history. March-August of 2013, HAA closed its Remembered, Regained: Immigrant Arts in Houston series with the multimedia exhibition Anointed and Adorned: Indian Weddings in Houston at the Alliance Gallery. This exhibition examined one of the most important ritual moments in Indian life: wedding celebrations. For Indians establishing themselves in Houston, these ceremonies mix the beauty of the old with the appeal of the new and surprising. The exhibition wedded the powerful photography of Sohil Maknojia, an interview audio installation collected by Rati Ramadas Girish, and videography by Dylan Reid. The exhibition opening was reminiscent of wedding festivities itself, including Indian music by DJ Rocky, and internationally acclaimed dancer/choreographer Rathna Kumar provided bridal attire donned by seven protégées of her dance studio in an informal fashion show representing seven distinct Indian wedding traditions. “The blend of sights, smells, and sounds transported and charmed visitors as they learned about the artistic Hindu wedding traditions that have evolved to reflect the modern American environment,” commented journalist Elvia Francis of Bibi Magazine. In October 2013 HAA partnered with the Houston Museum of African-American Culture (HMAAC) and Workshop Houston for the first Houston-wide SLAB Parade + Family Festival. SLABs, “slow, low, and banging” customized vehicles, are a national phenomenon, but this movement originated in Houston’s 1980s hip-hop scene. HMAAC’s CEO John Guess, Jr. notes that the festival helps to debunk negative associations of SLABs: “There was a time when rock ‘n’ roll musicians were seen as anti-social, anti-order, dangerous kinds of people. But the guys who own these cars have created an art form… that expresses itself so intensely that it connects with people all over the country.” HAA’s Pat Jasper noted that "SLAB culture is unique to this city and in a broader perspective [the festival] will help reposition this tradition's arts as a source of pride for the public." This family-friendly event included a 50+ vehicle parade; demonstrations by street artists and SLAB customizers; children’s creative stations; community booths; and live performances from Paul White, Bloc Boyz Click, Se7en, and dance ensemble Havikoro. Footage from the festival later appeared in music icon Beyoncé’s video “No Angel.”
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Impact Summary from the Nonprofit

As Houstonians, we are fortunate to have access to a wide variety of fine arts including museums, opera, dance, and theatre; but our city is also home to an abundance of accessible and engaging public art works -- the sculptural parking meters of the Warehouse District, the numerous installations at both Bush Intercontinental and Hobby airports, "The Blue Trees" on Allen Parkway, among countless other examples. Now, try to imagine what Houston would look like without its public art, without our sculptures, murals, mosaics, fountains, and memorials. This would not be the Houston we know and love. Houston is a city full of art that affects us in immeasurable ways on a daily basis. Public art brings Houstonians enjoyment. Public art showcases our diverse cultural communities. It is part of our identity. Public art puts Houston on the map as a 21st century city for the arts.
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