BALTIMORE, MD (Monday, September 18, 2023) – Today, Mayor Brandon M. Scott declares this week of September 18 ‘Arts and Culture Week’ in Baltimore. Ahead of the revival of Baltimore’s 38th Artscape this upcoming weekend following a three-year hiatus, the Scott Administration reaffirms the City’s commitment to prioritize and promote arts and culture in Baltimore through economic development, policy recommendations, community engagement, and education and outreach, as well as cultural heritage preservation and public art initiatives with this week’s designation.
“I’m thrilled to announce Arts and Culture Week to celebrate the rich tapestry of artistic expression in our community. The arts have always been an integral part of our city, contributing to our identity, vibrancy, and cultural diversity that reinforces our commitment to nurturing a thriving arts and culture district,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “It is our responsibility to ensure that the arts continue to flourish in our city, providing opportunities for artists to thrive, and for our residents to connect with the beauty and inspiration that art brings to our lives.”
With Artscape’s return this year, Mayor Scott seeks to support Baltimore’s well-established arts and culture community by creating, nurturing, and retaining a thriving creative economy that benefits those who live, work, and play in and around Baltimore.
The current administration aims to grow Baltimore’s Arts and Cultural sector to inspire artistic expressive initiatives, foster creativity, and promote diversity and equity.
As part of this focus, in February, Mayor Scott appointed Tonya R. Miller Hall as his Senior Advisor of Arts and Culture. Over the past several months, she has worked tirelessly to cultivate this community through economic development, policy recommendations, community engagement, and education and outreach, as well as cultural heritage preservation and public art initiatives.
“A thriving arts and cultural scene is an economic driver for the City,” said Miller Hall. “Therefore, I am committed to working alongside Mayor Scott to establish a sustainable creative economy that supports individual artists, cultural institutions, and programming.”
Throughout Arts and Culture Week, Mayor Scott will make several announcements to advance his administration’s commitment to prioritize and promote arts and culture in Baltimore, including honoring Tony and Grammy award-winning artist and Baltimore native André De Shields. This Thursday at 2:30 PM, the 1800 block of Division Street will be named André De Shields Way and September 21, 2023 will be declared “André De Shields Day.”
Currently, the Scott Administration is slated to invest more than $10 million in funding through the operating budget to support arts and culture for fiscal year 2024.
Additionally, the Department of Planning (DOP) invests approximately $1 million annually in capital projects for arts and culture organizations with physical spaces in the City through Cultural Spaces Capital Support grants and has executed annual $50,000 grant agreements for Baltimore’s four arts and entertainment districts since Fiscal Year 2021, totaling $800,000.
Through the American Rescue Plan Act, the Mayor’s Office of Recovery Programs has invested more than $3.7 million toward arts and culture to provide relief to individual artists, cultural institutions, festivals, and youth programming.
Baltimore City also has a one percent for Art ordinance that requires certain capital projects to set aside one percent of construction costs for public art with limited caveats and exclusions.