Uplifting Art

Uplifting Art

A Note from Omari Rush

Omari Rush engages the arts as a passion and profession, and in each mode enjoys discovery and deepening impacts. As executive director of CultureSource in Detroit, he advances efforts to have creative expression thrive in communities.

Globally, individuals, businesses, communities, and even nations have struggled to find footholds in climbing out of the coronavirus crisis. The arts sector has had a severe reaction to not being able to bring people together for performance, provide hands-on instruction to young people, or travel with the confidence that plans will not need to be cancelled.

However, the demise of the arts and culture sector has remained only a premonition and has not become a reality in part because of the grit of culture workers, and especially because of the amazing support from the community that by the day is feeding new capacities of resiliency.

That support has come from many dimensions of our communities, too. Federal and state governments have offered tranches of relief aid responsible for saving cultural assets that have been invested in for generations. Professionals in philanthropy—whether at private, family, or corporate foundations—have quickly embraced new ways of working in order to deploy resources that spur important sparks of innovation. Most importantly, audiences have remained at the center of the creative sector’s work. They keep themselves there by making unsolicited gifts to their favorite organizations and by offering ongoing words of empathy and encouragement to artists and leaders. And organizations are keeping these audiences at the center by continually pivoting tactics of presenting performance in order to prioritize safe and enjoyable connection with creative expression.

In all of our futures there are likely more virus variants, more outbreaks, and more uncertainty. We can be encouraged, though, by the way generosity has buoyed the sector to date, and we can continue to look to art in any form for reminders of the possibilities of the human spirit to create and will new worlds into being.

For opportunities to support DCWS and GLCMF, visit our websites or contact BethAnne Kunert at kunert@art-ops.org