Santa Monica’s ‘Art of Recovery’ initiative funding artistic works around city

As part of the City of Santa Monica’s Economic Recovery Task Force, Cultural Affairs has launched a new Art of Recovery initiative to harness the power of the arts in the City’s economic, community, and health recovery efforts. Inspired by the WPA-era’s Federal Art Project, this initiative will fund artistic works and creative projects that will strengthen and connect Santa Monica.

Art of Recovery is launching with a pair of projects at two of the City’s most notable locations, Main Street, and the Santa Monica Pier. Local artists will transform the plain k-rail concrete safety dividers that line Main Street’s al fresco dining and retail experience into colorful works of art to create a vibrant destination and corridor. In celebration of Dia de Los Muertos, Santa Monica Pier featured larger than life sculptures of La Catrina, the grand dame and iconic holiday figure, by Los Angeles-based artist Ricardo Soltero from October 31, through November 2.

Throughout the coming year, additional projects across the City will be announced and unveiled on a rolling basis.

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La Catrina sculptures by artist Ricardo Soltero.Photo provided courtesy of Downtown Santa Monica, Inc.

“The arts have the power to transform our City and communities during these uncertain times,“ noted Shannon Daut, City of Santa Monica Manager of Cultural Affairs. “Artists and creatives can develop solutions that are inventive, compelling and engaging, and we want to provide them with the space, flexibility and support as we work together as a community to safely reopen and rebuild.”

Projects funded through Art of Recovery will focus on three main priorities: economic recovery, community connectedness & restorative justice, and public health & safety, with the goal of creating lasting change in the community’s health through vibrant public spaces. The program aims to strengthen the local network of artists, nurture connections between artists and other sectors, and build cohorts of learners focused on integrating the arts and artists into community efforts. Participants will have the opportunity to participate in meetings to learn together and collaborate on the approach to accomplishing the work.

All Los Angeles County-based artist collectives and artists at all stages of their career, as well as businesses and nonprofits with an official address within Santa Monica city limits are eligible to apply. Businesses and artists can apply with a proposal collaboratively or independently, and Cultural Affairs can provide matchmaking to connect artists, business groups, and community groups.

Submissions will be reviewed and implemented on a rolling basis through June 30, 2021.
For more information on Art of Recovery and to submit a Letter of Intent, please visit santamonica.gov/arts/artofrecovery. To receive notices of arts opportunities from Cultural Affairs, such as programs like this, fellowships, residencies, calls for proposals, and more, sign up at bit.ly/ArtSaMoOpportunities, and click on ‘Artist Opportunities’.

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