Artists and the arts organizations that support them are particularly vulnerable right now due to their reliance on people buying art or tickets, and writing checks of support. Whether you're talking about visual arts or music, theater or stand-up comedy, the future is frustratingly unpredictable for folks who already just barely get by keeping the arts blossoming in and around the Lilac City.
"Oftentimes, the arts ... are seen as a nicety versus a necessity, or that they're just entertainment," says Ginger Ewing, executive director of Terrain, the Spokane-based arts organization whose events steered nearly $500,000 to regional artists in 2019. "We believe really strongly that it's the heart and the soul of our city. We have to feed people's bellies, but we have to feed their hearts, their minds and their souls, too."
By now, you've likely heard of some ways to help arts venues stay afloat, like giving the money you paid for tickets to a canceled event as a donation. You've surely seen GoFundMe accounts to help some venues' laid-off employees, and you can buy directly from many artists online. You can also donate directly to your favorite arts organizations, many of which are also supporting artists through this crisis as well.
Here are a few organizations that could use any help you can afford:
Spokane Arts has established the Spokane Artists & Creatives Emergency Fund to provide small grants to artists who lost income due to canceled gigs, events and shows. Visit spokanearts.kindful/com/artistrelief.
Terrain is accepting donations at terrainspokane.com, and you can buy gift certificates for its From Here store for future use at terrainspokane.com/fromhere. Tickets are also available for their July Terrain Table fundraiser at terraintable.org
Spokane Comedy Club owner BARK Entertainment has an account to help its 100 employees at four clubs survive the shutdown. Search for "Spokane Comedy Club" at gofundme.com.
The Bing Crosby Theater encourages donations to the Friends of the Bing to offset losses to canceled shows via bingcrosbytheater.com.
The Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture had to cancel its April fundraising gala, but you can buy a tax-deductible "virtual ticket" or "virtual table" to support the museum. Visit northwestmuseum.org and hit the "2020 MAC Gala Cancelled" link.
The Art Spirit Gallery in Coeur d'Alene has its staff working for free for the next 30-60 days, but they could use donations to keep their doors open. Visit gofundme.com and search "Save the Art Spirit Gallery." (DAN NAILEN)
Any arts organizations who want help getting the word out about their fundraisers and programs to help regional artists, please email Inlander Arts & Culture Editor Dan Nailen at firstname.lastname@example.org.