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Charlotte Street Foundation grants opportunities for Kansas City artists

Harold Smith touches up his installation "Visible Man" created from a series of hollow-core doors and sculpted joint compound.
Julie Denesha
Harold Smith is shown touching up his installation "Visible Man" that was exhibited at the 2021 grand opening of the Charlotte Street Foundation's new space. Smith is just one of many artists who has benefitted from the foundation's support of the arts.

The long-time supporter of the arts has been approved for a $35,000 grant to support studio and startup residencies.

Two programs will be supported by this grant from the National Endowment of Arts: studio residency and startup residency.

Charlotte Street’s studio residency program provides visual artists, writers, and generative performing artists with free studio and rehearsal space, professional development, exhibition and performance opportunities, and mentorships.

Jada Patterson, a current studio resident says she's benefited from the program. It allows her to interact with other artists and bounce ideas off her peers. Engaging with other artists is something Jada says she really thrives on and was unable to do during the pandemic.

Former studio resident Elizabeth Bettendorf Bowman of KC Public Theater seconded the value of that experience noting how invaluable it was "to be able to have a place to create that was safe," adding, "to have that support was really a catalyst."

The startup residency makes it possible for emerging area arts organizations to test their visions and create a proof-of-concept. Charlotte Street offers free storefront space, mentorship from established art administrators and creative entrepreneurs, community engagement, and marketing support.

The foundation selects artist-run startups that are unique, push boundaries, and fill a gap in the Kansas City arts ecology. Its particular focus is on organizations that address an unmet need or provide a platform for underrepresented art communities or disciplines.

As Charlotte Street's Patrick Alexander sees it, "I feel like this organization has always just kind of grown with the Arts community, listening and just being able to offer whatever that is that we need to do."

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