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Resources to aid artists, grant makers, and art organizations in achieving racial equity in the arts. 


What can be done as an Individual Practitioner?

Consider how you and your organization can be educated on institutional racism, transformed and changed over time. This should come first.

  • Everyone should be educated on historic, systemic racism. Find a training that is right for you. This training, particularly for white people, will give you confidence in a vocabulary, a greater understanding as an ally, and a truer understanding of the structures that have had an historic impact on preventing equity.

  • Find allies who want to learn with you, read articles/books, and broaden your understanding of the historic context.

  • Recognize the difference between diversity, inclusion, and equity.

  • Learn about implicit bias and its impacts on your philanthropic and personal practices.

  • Seek support from colleagues who are in the process of creating change within their institutions.

  • Be committed to a lifelong process of learning and change.

  • Be available to your peers as a resource.

  • Conduct data analysis (using a racial equity lens) on your own portfolio to identify where dollars are going and opportunities for change.

  • Use inclusive and welcoming language in your external communications.

  • Seek research and data about racial equity to present to institutional leadership.

  • Mine your own institutional history for past efforts and lessons learned.

  • Identify resources and allies within your own organization and/or your community.

  • Learn the history of local ALAANA communities and become familiar with leaders.

  • Seek opportunities to institutionalize your work.

What can be done in your Institution?

  • Establish a racial equity advisory committee or working group of colleagues that will inform programming direction and guide institutional change.

  • Regularly promote racial equity throughout all communication platforms.

  • Advocate research and data collection that accurately represents the demographics served by and serving in arts organizations and foundations.

  • Provide an opportunity for board and staff to attend structural racism training.

  • Intentionally consider, select, and support ALAANA candidates for board and staff.

  • Intentionally consider, select, and support board and staff who value racial equity.

  • Assure that a racial equity lens informs all decision-making, programs, policies, and procedures.

  • Collaborate with other organizations working toward greater racial equity to provide resources and share best practices to create equity for ALAANA organizations and artists.

Grantmakers in the arts: Black Arts Funding Summit


This Summit asks the question: Beyond the ‘difficult conversations’ and ‘good intentions,’ how can institutional grantmaking dollars be used to actively go about change at every level? Watch the recording of Grantmakers in the Arts virtual Black Arts Funding Summit featuring experts across fields and industries who have directly shaped institutional policy and established new practices that support Black liberatory futures.




"The history of predominantly White-led institutions benefiting from the disenfranchisement of the Black artist and community is well documented. From slavery to Jim Crow, to post Civil Rights era, to today, Black artists have been continuously excluded from the canon, been wrongly categorized, and historically disregarded as obvious by the egregious lack of Black staff, leadership, and representation at cultural institutions across the nation." -North Carolina Black Artists for Liberation



Creating Cultures and Practices for Racial Equity

Creating Cultures and Practices for Racial Equity contains a variety of tools that emerged from Race Forward’s Racial Equity in the Arts Innovation Lab to help artists, arts advocates, culture bearers, and cultural workers to imagine, plan, and implement racial equity strategies in arts organizations. Whether an art or cultural practitioner already working with a racial equity team and plan or just beginning the journey towards organizational transformation, these tools can help guide, focus, and reinvigorate efforts.

Using a racial equity tool helps give deliberate attention to racial and social justice. These tools can be used to make strategic and equitable decisions in assessing existing or proposed policies, practices, plans, programs, grantmaking, contracting, budgets, etc.



Racial Equity in Arts Leadership (REAL)

Vanderbilt University's Curb Center for Art, Enterprise, and Public Policy and Metro Nashville Arts Commission (Metro Arts) created the Racial Equity in Arts Leadership (REAL) program designed to drive racial equity in Nashville’s arts sector. REAL brings together arts administrators, executive leaders of cultural institutions, community-based arts organizations, and individual artists for regular seminars and organizational workshops that provide insight into how institutional practices such as hiring processes and arts programming choices can advance racial equity in our community. REAL participants meet regularly to address challenges they encounter as they work to build more equitable practices in their institutions.



Racial Equity Learning Resources

The CAC-provided resources offer a survey of methods, commitments, and points of entry that local, state, and national arts organizations have used to understand and advance racial equity practices and policies. Every community experiences the impacts of systemic racism and systemic inequities differently, therefore community specific approaches to addressing systems of inequity are crucial in this work. The CAC seeks to support these community-led racial equity practices. Use the resources as inspiration to start, refine, and/or support the development of your organization’s racial equity statement and practices.

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