After months of bad news for local arts organizations, over the past few days we’ve gotten a flurry of emails with still more sad tidings, this time from the folks at Intermedia Arts. This 35-year-old multidisciplinary arts center—home to an array of beloved programs, from the popular B-Girl Be hip-hop festival to its acclaimed literary series, visual arts exhibitions and annual performance spectacle, Naked Stages—is in the midst of a funding crisis that threatens their very survival. In what has become an all-too-familiar refrain, the organization attributes its current budget shortfall to same the hounds barking at the door of most (if not all) other nonprofit organizations of like size, whether they’re arts-focused or not.
Intermedia Arts’ website describes their situation bluntly: “Over the past several weeks [we have] experienced sharp reductions and significant delays in funding. As a mid-sized arts organization, we rely on foundations and funders for our general operating support—foundations and funders who have lost enormous amounts of their assets in our current economic crisis.”
The circumstances are undeniably stark. All their full-time staff have already been moved into diminished positions where they’ll work part time, as contract or hourly staff, and as of January 9, the gallery will be shuttered and poetry library hours canceled until future notice.
The Intermedia Arts Town Hall Meeting will be begin at 5:30 pm on Friday, December 19 on site in Minneapolis. (They’ve indicated that free childcare will be available.)
Some related links: