Rockefeller Foundation Announces Fund to Spur Cultural Innovation in NYC

Jun 13, 2007, 01:00 ET from The Rockefeller Foundation

    NEW YORK, June 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rockefeller Foundation
 president Judith Rodin announced today the creation of a New York City
 Cultural Innovation Fund. The Fund will recognize and support innovation
 and new opportunities in the cultural arena and strengthen the role arts
 play in the life of the City.
     "The Rockefeller Foundation's New York City Cultural Innovation Fund is
 an ideal way to enhance the City's cultural vitality by promoting
 innovation in the arts," said Judith Rodin, president of the Foundation.
 "We're delighted that this Fund, in conjunction with our other investments
 in New York City, will help energize the cultural fabric of the city that
 has been the Foundation's home for nearly 100 years."
     Individual grants -- between $50,000 and $250,000 -- will be awarded
 annually from a $2.5 million fund for projects that fall into one or more
 of the following categories:
     -- Programming and premieres of new artistic work that demonstrate
        innovation and can activate new directions in the artistic breadth and
        depth of institutions in the visual, performing and media arts
     -- Creative engagement with the issues shaping New York City's future
        cultural and civic agenda
     -- Partnerships that bring cultural and community-based institutions
        together with universities and the private sector
     -- Interventions designed to confront longstanding bottlenecks and
        limitations on the expansion of cultural vitality with fresh approaches
        and solutions.
     To qualify, organizations must have an annual budget of at least
 $250,000. Grants will be awarded for a two-year period.
     To help ensure that the projects chosen by the Cultural Innovation Fund
 demonstrate a high potential for innovation, creative engagement and
 cultural vitality, the Rockefeller Foundation has named three prominent
 leaders from the fields of innovation and the arts to serve as advisors to
 the Fund:
     -- Lowery Stokes Sims, Visiting Professor at Queens College and Hunter
        College and former President of the Studio Museum in Harlem
     -- David Thorpe, Senior Partner and Global Director of Innovation, Ogilvy
     -- Andrew Zolli, Founder, Z + Partners, a consulting firm specializing in
        analyzing cultural, technological and global trends, and curator of the
        annual Pop!Tech Conference.
     "A vibrant and diverse creative sector has always been a hallmark of
 New York City's history and a key factor in establishing the City as a
 leader among global urban centers," said Darren Walker, vice president for
 Foundation Initiatives at the Rockefeller Foundation. "Local cultural
 organizations have traditionally served as the wellspring of that creative
 identity. Support for these cultural institutions can no longer be taken
 for granted, which is why the Foundation created the New York City Cultural
 Innovation Fund -- to help the City maintain its position as a global
 leader by ensuring the future vitality of its cultural sector."
     Other Rockefeller Foundation initiatives in New York City include the
 Jane Jacobs Medal, which recognizes excellence in the field of urban
 development. The Foundation is also a key supporter of Opportunity New York
 City, a public-private partnership administered by the City, that uses a
 poverty-reduction strategy, known as conditional cash transfers, to help
 ease the day-to-day challenges faced by poor families in New York City.
     The New York City Cultural Innovation Fund builds upon the Rockefeller
 Foundation's tradition of support for the arts. Currently, the Foundation
 supports artists in a variety of fields through its investments in a number
 of national arts organizations, including Renew Media, United States
 Artists and Creative Capital. Historically, the Foundation provided major
 support for the establishment of several of New York City's landmark
 cultural institutions, including Lincoln Center, the Museum of Modern Art
 and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
     For further information about the New York City Cultural Innovation
 Fund, or to submit an idea, please visit
     -- The deadline for initial applications is July 20, 2007.
     -- Applicants invited to submit a full proposal will be notified by August
        20, 2007.
     -- The deadline for submission of full proposals is September 14, 2007.
     -- The Foundation will announce the Cultural Innovation grants in November
     The Rockefeller Foundation was established in 1913 by John D.
 Rockefeller, Sr., to "promote the well-being" of humanity by addressing the
 root causes of serious problems. The Foundation works around the world to
 expand opportunities for poor or vulnerable people and to help ensure that
 globalization's benefits are more widely shared. With assets of more than
 $3.5 billion, it is one of the few institutions to conduct such work both
 within the United States and internationally.

SOURCE The Rockefeller Foundation