Artists throughout Westchester County are hurting. The Coronavirus has had a devastating $8.4 billion economic impact on America’s arts sector with a 67% unemployment rate among artists and gig workers. Since the first U.S. case was reported in January, 96% of arts and culture organizations have cancelled events—some as far out as 2021—resulting in a loss of 325 million ticketed admissions and billions of dollars more lost in event-related spending by audiences at local businesses (restaurants, lodging, retail), impacting 533,000 jobs.
Artists throughout Westchester are struggling to meet rent obligations, purchase food, and fund medical expenses due to canceled concerts, darkened theatres, shuttered museums and terminated artist residences in schools and community sites. With gigs, classes and workshops now “distanced,” we’d like to lend a hand to our vulnerable colleagues who have always brought the joy of the arts into our lives.
If you feel, as we do, that the power of the arts has enriched your life, please join us in our efforts to support Westchester Artists through ArtsWestchester’s Artist Relief Fund. Artists and creatives are at the heart of Westchester’s cultural community. Their work sustains creative projects and fuels our cities and towns with vibrancy. The ArtsWestchester Artist Relief Fund will award grants of $500 to individual artists who live or work in Westchester and whose creative practices and incomes have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
The application process for artists is now open and continues on a rolling basis. To apply, click here. For any questions contact ArtsWestchester at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We need your support more than ever before because we want to help as many artists as possible. Your gift of any size will help Westchester’s artists get through this challenging time.
We will continue collecting donations indefinitely and distributing funds to artists on a first-come, first-serve basis. The number of artists we can support is directly dependent on how much funding is raised, so please share widely with your networks.
ArtsWestchester is Westchester County’s designated arts agency, making the arts accessible to all county residents, advancing cultural tourism, and supporting a vibrant nonprofit cultural sector through grants and technical assistance to artists and cultural organizations; arts education for people of all ages; and promoting the county’s arts resources to local and regional audiences. For more information visit: artsw.org and follow @artswestchester and #ArtistReliefFund.
*2020 national survey by Americans for the Arts