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Asheville Arts Council Starts Resource Center



8/26/2008 - Asheville Arts Council Starts Resource Center

ASHEVILLE The Asheville Area Arts Council is creating a resource center intended to help performing and visual artists and organizations become more successful.

In partnership with Mountain BizWorks and Handmade in America, the arts council is founding The Resource Center for the Arts. The center will provide a physical location where artists and arts organizations can receive the training and resources necessary to succeed in their creative endeavors.

The council is planning the center now, and the steering committee will begin meeting with performing and visual artists and agencies to determine what services the arts community needs and wants, the council said.

Most prominent among preliminary ideas are networking, marketing and fundraising support, business planning and professional development classes, collaboration and mentoring opportunities and resources such as legal counsel, co-op buying, insurance and affordable studio space.

Residents are more likely to stay in (and more people are attracted to) counties with larger proportions of workers in arts-related occupations, according to the report Creative Economy: The Arts Industry in North Carolina, done for the North Carolina Arts Council. The presence of creative professionals in a given county is the single-most important factor associated with the amount that visitors will spend, the report states.

Were making it a top priority to help grow the creative economy in Asheville and Western North Carolina, said Asheville Area Arts Council executive director Angela Martinez. We want to ensure that we provide a friendly, responsive and supportive environment for the arts.

The council is seeking sponsorships and grants for the center, which will operate under the non-profit status of the arts council. Contact the council at 258-0710.

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