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Local Chefs Fund the Arts by Feeding People

A group of young Kansas City artists are trying a new way of funding the arts by feeding people.


Kansas City, Mo. – It's a tough time to be an artist. Federal and state governments are cutting back on funding, and, while the art market is improving, it's still slow. KCUR's Alex Smith has the story.

It's a sunny Sunday evening in downtown Kansas City, Mo., and about 40 people are eagerly standing in line for big bowls of split pea soup, a Reuben salad, and homemade focaccia bread. It's all you can eat for a minimum 10 dollar donation. But chef and event host Joy Costa admits that the food is a kind of trick to get people to be a part of a monthly, traveling project called Bread KC.

Bread KC started in October of 2010, but the original concept comes from a Chicago group called Sunday Soup, which started in 2007. Variations of the dinner and micro grants ideas have sprouted all around the US and in Europe, and today there are 34 groups in the Sunday Soup network. Many of the artists involved in the network are in their early-to-mid-twenties. They're grown up with the internet, and they see art as way to bring people together in a way that's almost retro.

The next Bread KC dinner is Thursday, May 12, 2011, 7 - 10 pm, at the Leedy-Voulkos Art Center, part of a series of America: Now and Here events.

This story was produced for KC Currents. To listen on your own schedule, subscribe to the KC Currents Podcast.

As a health care reporter, I aim to empower my audience to take steps to improve health care and make informed decisions as consumers and voters. I tell human stories augmented with research and data to explain how our health care system works and sometimes fails us. Email me at alexs@kcur.org.
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