Fortune and Fame 

At the end of December, Citydesk's George Prentice reported that the City of Boise's Department of Arts and History would participate in a study that looks at the economic impact of arts organizations on a community.

Arts and Economic Prosperity IV is a research study being conducted by Americans for the Arts that will look at what nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences have on local economies.

Boise is one of 200 study partners, each providing event attendance data. In Boise, more than 800 patrons will be surveyed at arts and culture events in 2011. In the last study, performed in 2005, it was estimated that arts and culture organizations and their audiences had a $38 million impact on the area economy. The industry employed more than 1,200 local residents. We'll keep you up to date on this year's study results.

Speaking of a healthy community, here at BWHQ, we look at the use of art by local artists on our covers as a way to support them, and we hope the exposure affords them new opportunities. Matthew Chambers, whose work graced the cover of Boise Weekly in December 2004, was recently featured in Interview Magazine in an article written by the magazine's editor-at-large, Christopher Bollen. Chambers spoke on his inspiration and his process.

"The subject matter comes from an onslaught of 'classical' sources--junk mail, advertising fliers, magazines and basically whatever else lands near the artist's feet to grab his attention (he tends to shy away from Internet searches)," Bollen wrote. "In effect, Chambers seems to be taking an anti-conceptualist stance with his work, refusing to play philosopher, spiritual guide and translator for his audience." Read more at interviewmagazine.com/art/matt-chambers.

Speaking of our covers, it's time for us to start giving away the proceeds of the 2010 Boise Weekly Cover Auction. We netted a record $17,000, so there's plenty to go around. BW Cover Auction grants have been used for everything from public art to dance to literature. Organizations and individuals are eligible to apply and at least one artist will be awarded the PJ Dean Grant. Applicants should submit a proposal answering the following questions: How do you or your organization support local artists? Will this grant fund a new project or an existing project? What is the projected budget? How will the grant be used? Where is the location of the project and what is its accessibility? And how will this project benefit the community and support the mission of the Boise Weekly Cover Auction? Proposals are due at BWHQ by 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 4. For more information, call Office Manager Shea Sutton at 208-344-2055 or shea@boiseweekly.com.

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