5 Respected Supporters Of Arts Professionals

Artistic ability alone is not enough to propel one to success. Beyond raw talent, creators require material resources, public exposure, and widespread social and economic support to thrive in their fields. Thankfully, this reality is made possible by a number of devoted arts organizations. Offering exhibitions, professional development, residencies, and more, the groups here, listed in no particular order, help advance a variety of creative disciplines and their communities.

For #1 we have the International Fine Print Dealers Association, an organization of expert art dealers who champion the work of printmaking artists. It consists of over 160 members representing countries around the world. Through its network, online presence, and public programs, the I.F.P.D.A. fosters knowledge and stimulates discussion about print collection, in both the public sphere and within the global art community.

Every year in New York City, the organization hosts the I.F.P.D.A. Fine Art Print Fair, the largest international fair dedicated to the creative medium of printmaking. The group also advances research, education, and dialogue for a new generation through its charitable Foundation, which offers annual grants and curatorial internships. The Foundation provides direct financial support to exhibitions and scholarly projects that cultivate a deeper understanding of prints and their value as an art form.

Coming in at #2 is Chicago Artists Coalition. A non-profit organization, CAC offers residency programs, exhibitions, professional development, and resources to contemporary artists and curators in Chicago. Begun in 1974 as a small creative group advocating for rights, support, and visibility, the organization continues to launch the careers of emerging talent, while increasing awareness and appreciation for their work among collectors and audiences alike.

After moving to a new location in 2018, CAC eliminated artist fees from its residency programs, created a dedicated education center, and built out its space as A.D.A. accessible. The organization has two primary residency options: BOLT and HATCH. Both are juried programs for emerging and mid-career Chicago artists, with the latter giving curators the opportunity to produce collaborative exhibitions. CAC also offers education events such as workshops, creative activities, seminars, and individual consultations.

For #3 we get the Association of Performing Arts Professionals, the national service, advocacy, and membership organization for the field of performing arts. Serving thousands of member organizations and individuals since 1957, APAP is dedicated to developing and supporting a robust presenting, booking, and touring industry, and championing the professionals who work within it.

APAP aims to strengthen and advance careers through professional development, resource sharing, advocacy, grant support, and civic engagement. It offers year-round programs focused on leadership training for emerging and mid-level arts leaders and young performers, as well as free webinars and think tanks. Central to the Association is its annual APAP NYC conference, a premier industry gathering where talent, agents, managers, consultants, and vendors can engage with the larger performing arts community.

Next, at #4 is Dance/USA. Established in 1982, it's the national service organization for professional dance. The group champions an inclusive and equitable dance field by leading, convening, advocating, and supporting individuals and organizations. Its core programs are focused on four areas: leadership and learning, research and information, advocacy and visibility, and archiving and preservation.

Dance/USA represents the interests of the national dance community before Congress, the White House, and federal agencies, and works with the broader arts and nonprofit sectors to advocate for the development and implementation of relevant national policies. The organization offers a number of special programs, initiatives, and resources, including fellowships, skill-building workshops, leadership training, and the Artist's Legacy Toolkit, which helps members organize and preserve their work.

Finally, landing at #5 is the Pastel Society of America, founded in 1972 by Flora B. Giffuni. This educational nonprofit sets standards of professional excellence in studio practice, and educates the public regarding the permanence and beauty of the pastel medium. PSA accomplishes its goals through certification, workshops, classes, demonstrations, and exhibitions, as well as by distributing information through its website, publications, and e-communications.

Headquartered at the National Arts Club in New York City, PSA holds annual exhibitions of pastel artists from around the world. The Society encourages creative advancement through prestigious awards, both monetary and material, distributed during the exhibitions. Further advancing the form is the PSA School, which offers classes, workshops, and critiques. Meanwhile, The Butler Institute in Youngstown, Ohio houses the Flora B. Giffuni Gallery of American Pastels, the only museum gallery in the US devoted exclusively to the medium.