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Arts Council Is Still Operating

April 07, 1993

Recently it has been reported in some of the local newspapers that the Ventura Arts Council is closing its doors. Let me assure you and your readers that this is not true.

What is true is that, similarly to many businesses and particularly other nonprofit organizations, the Ventura Arts Council needs to adjust to the changing economic climate. Successful organizations remain dynamic by continually adapting to meet the changing influences in the marketplace and economy. Those who don't are sure to lose.

Our cash flow problem, like most every organization's, is due to the soft economy. The arts council has experienced severe cutbacks in funding from the city and in private and corporate contributions. To cut back on large monthly expenses such as staff and the rental cost of the Momentum Gallery space, we have moved into a small office in The Livery complex and are currently in the process of hiring a project coordinator to replace the two former staff positions.

To support the new coordinator, our dedicated board of directors is taking on more of the organizational and programmatic responsibilities.

We are also approaching real estate brokers and property owners of downtown commercial space to work with the arts council to establish temporary art exhibits in some of their vacant buildings. This is a great way to exhibit art in public places while showcasing interesting Ventura architecture. We've also started an art-in-public-places program to curate temporary art exhibits in retail stores and restaurants.

The Ventura Arts Council also works hard to remain vital in the community it serves. In response to problems with gangs, violence in schools, graffiti and tagging, we are putting together a program that will encourage students to express themselves through the arts.

We are soliciting help with this program from groups like SOS for JESSE, the Ventura Unified School District, the city of Ventura, the Chamber of Commerce, service organizations such as the Elks and Rotary clubs, the business community and the public at large.

As you can see, the Ventura Arts Council is alive and moving ahead. We invite those who would like to participate with us to call the Ventura Arts Council.

HENRY CARLISLE

President

Ventura Arts Council

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