I'm Kenney Mencher. I'm an artist who left a tenured professorship in 2016 to pursue making art full time. This blog is about art, art history, with a emphasis on human rights. I make homoerotic art featuring bears, otters & other gay wildlife.
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
SOMArts Executive Director Maria Jenson and Brad Erickson, Executive Director of Theater Bay Area, prepare to meet with Representative Nancy Pelosi as part of Arts Advocacy Day in Washington, DC.
Greetings from Washington, DC!
Dear SOMArts Supporters, Many of you have reached out to me in the days since President Trump announced his proposed budget that would eliminate federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among many other social services and programs that contribute to the health and safety of communities across the country. I appreciate your expressions of solidarity with SOMArts during this time of uncertainty for many arts organizations.
While Trump unveiled his plans to abandon the most marginalized in our communities by withdrawing federal funds from so many crucial programs, I have had the privilege of witnessing arts and cultural workers from across the country come together in Washington, DC for Arts Advocacy Day. I’ve been inspired by my colleagues’ commitment to ensuring everyone has access to the arts, and I’ve had the chance to share some of SOMArts’ creative resistance strategies with national policymakers. As I write this, SOMArts staff members in San Francisco are preparing to rally on the steps of City Hall as part of the coalition known as Arts for a Better Bay Area.
I’m proud of the work SOMArts does to uplift the voices of artists who are too often left out of the mainstream, and I want to assure you that we will continue to advocate for our belief that access to the arts is central to building vibrant neighborhoods, cities and societies. Now more than ever, we need the creativity of artists to help create a society that works for all, not just a privileged few.