SOURCE: Peninsula Community Foundation

April 26, 2005 11:00 ET

Peninsula Community Foundation Announces Recipients of Its First Artist Residency Program

$75,000 Awarded to Local Artists That Will Build Community Programs

SAN MATEO, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- April 26, 2005 -- Peninsula Community Foundation (PCF), a leader in community philanthropy of the Peninsula and Silicon Valley, today announced the recipients of its first Peninsula Community Foundation Artist Residency program. Michael Turner, an accomplished musician, Carla Brooke, a talented mixed media artist and Marianne Thomas, an award-winning photographer, each received $25,000 to advance their artistic careers while working with members of the community to produce art of their own. One more recipient, a performing artist, will be chosen this summer. It is one of the few artist residency programs in the Bay Area where artists are working with members of the community to enrich the cultural environment.

"We are thrilled with the talent of the resident artists and the beauty they will create in our communities," said Sterling Speirn, President, Peninsula Community Foundation. "The residency program will provide financial support to individual local artists as well as improve the quality of life for all residents. In a six month time-frame, our artists in residence will touch the lives of more than 100 children and families and will work to cultivate the next generation of community artists."

The Artist Residency recipients include:

--  Michael Turner, who will provide free instrumental music classes to
    children at the Phoenix Academy, a school serving at-risk and
    underprivileged children in East Palo Alto. Turner will continue the
    preservation of the art of traditional and contemporary jazz, gospel and
    other popular music forms through musical instruction and performance of
    his original work. The residency will culminate with a community concert by
    the children in East Palo Alto.
    
--  Carla Brooke will create a mosaic and tile art work that will be
    installed in the community garden of Gloria Way, the Peninsula Habitat for
    Humanity housing complex and neighboring Bay Oaks apartments in East Palo
    Alto. The residents, 300 low-income families from diverse ethnic
    backgrounds, will receive mixed media art classes and will participate in
    all aspects of the design and installation of the mosaic and tile sidewalk.
    An art exhibit will be held at the end of the project to honor local
    residents.
    
--  Marianne Thomas will teach children at the Mid-Peninsula Boys and
    Girls Club in San Mateo to use digital and film cameras to express ideas
    and feelings, document their environment, learn about storytelling and to
    offer photography as a potential career choice to older children.
    Photographs will be displayed every week and the children will vote on
    their favorites to be submitted to the national Boys and Girls Club
    photography contest. The residency will culminate in a community exhibit.
    
The Artist Residency Program is part of a collaborative initiative involving the East Bay Community Foundation, Marin Community Foundation, PCF and the San Francisco Foundation. The Fund for Artists, a joint initiative, is a $1 million fund to support creative individuals across the greater Bay Area. The Fund for Artists has received support from Leveraging Investments in Creativity (LINC) and the Ford Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

The residency program is one strategy to meet the needs of individual artists in our community, which several recent studies conducted by the Urban Institute have highlighted. The primary challenge facing creative individuals in our region today is funding:

--  63% of artists earn less than $7,000 from their art;
--  78% of artists work more than one job, with all artists surveyed
    having a median gross income from all sources of $35,000;
--  Artists have less time to spend on their art than they did 15 years
    ago.
    
PCF is committed to supporting the arts, donating more than $6 million towards art programs in 2004.

About Peninsula Community Foundation

For 40 years, Peninsula Community Foundation has worked with nonprofits, donors, and government agencies to change the world -- one community at a time. With assets of over $609 million, including a $113 million Community Endowment, PCF is an innovative leader in meeting the needs of the community in the areas or children and families, education, health and human services, the environment, the arts, and strengthening nonprofits. PCF divisions include the Center for Venture Philanthropy™, the Peninsula Partnership for Children, Youth and Families™, and the Peninsula Nonprofit Center™. For more information call 650.358.9369 or visit www.pcf.org.

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