Last month, Mayor Jackie Biskupski held a breakfast to communicate her vision for arts and culture in Salt Lake City. Stakeholders who attended the breakfast include city staff, leaders from dozens of arts organizations in the city, Visit Salt Lake, Downtown Alliance, Cultural Core, and supporters of the arts.
The breakfast gave Mayor Biskupski an opportunity to address the arts and culture priorities of her administration, with specific goals to accomplish. For decades, Salt Lake City has invested in many studies and master plans that have identified needs and objectives for elevating the arts and cultural sectors throughout the City. Several of the major objectives that have been discussed for years have seen little movement to date. Mayor Biskupski wants to change that, and has identified meaningful strategies to affect meaningful change.
Mayor Biskupski’s Arts Initiatives
Whether you’re familiar with the arts in Salt Lake City or not, you may have heard about many of these goals from previous efforts and studies. Here are some actions Mayor Biskupski and her staff will focus on to ensure forward movement in accomplishing these goals.
- Support opportunities for the vibrant expression of arts and culture. The City will do so by increasing grant funding for the arts, enhancing the impact of city funding, and examining the current policies and procedures to better serve and support Salt Lake City artists and creatives.
- Promote and support Salt Lake City as a destination for entertainment, arts, and cultural diversity. The City can’t do this alone. We will focus on strengthening and leveraging our partnerships to help highlight Salt Lake City’s arts assets shine for national and international markets. We will look for opportunities to delight out-of-market audiences with the world class arts and cultural offerings we provide, and seek to be recognized as the arts, culture and entertainment destination that residents and frequent visitors of the City know us to be.
- Support and encourage public art and creative space. The City will focus on increasing opportunities for private sector collaboration. When someone thinks of Salt Lake City, something unique and special should come to mind.
- Seek and strengthen partnerships to enhance the arts. By convening regular meetings with key stakeholders– including local arts organizations from around the State, partners in the public and private sectors, and individual artists and creatives, we can identify unique opportunities for collaboration, and expand access to resources.
- Support development of artists and audiences. Broadening the impact of the Living Traditions Festival by creating year-round, city-wide programming; exploring the creation of a new cultural district in the Granary area; expanding principals of the Cultural Core beyond the downtown area, and across Salt Lake City; creating new resources for artist development and training; and improving retention of the City’s talent.
Our cultural experiences can have a transforming effect on people, and contribute to our quality of life, encourage economic growth, and create deeper levels of understanding in our society. Salt Lake City is truly a “city for everyone” tied together by the expression of our arts and cultural communities.
As we accomplish these goals, we’ll be sure to update you all on this blog and through our social media channels. Stay tuned!