Chicago Sinfonietta among 18 arts organizations of color in new Wallace Foundation initiative

Posted on: May 26, 2022

The Chicago Sinfonietta, violinist Melissa White, and cellist Ifetayo Ali-Landing in a 2018 performance conducted by Project Inclusion Fellow Kellen Gray. Photo: Chris Ocken

“Eighteen arts organizations of color across the country” will each receive from $900,000 to $3.75 million over the next five years in a new initiative from the Wallace Foundation, “which aims to foster equity and improvements in the arts,” writes Laura Zornosa in Thursday’s (5/26) New York Times. “The 18 grantees were selected from over 250 applicants and include 1Hood Media in Pittsburgh, Chicago Sinfonietta, the Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project in San Francisco, the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Mich., and the Union for Contemporary Art in Omaha, Neb. This marks the first phase—aimed at organizations with budgets between $500,000 and $5 million—of a broader national arts initiative by the Wallace Foundation. A future phase will focus on a second, larger group of grantees with budgets below $500,000. In total, the foundation has committed to providing funding of up to $100 million. This iteration, though, was designed around a specific guiding question: How can arts organizations of color use their experience working closely with their communities to stay resilient and relevant?… Over the next year, grantees will map out their funding in partnership with advisers and consultants, including researchers, ethnographers and financial management planners.” Chicago Sinfonietta is the only orchestra among the grantees.