About the Arts Council New Orleans

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Our Mission & Purpose

Now in its fourth decade, the Arts Council New Orleans is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting arts and culture in the city. Our mission is to improve quality of life in New Orleans by supporting,
activating, and investing in our city’s greatest natural resource: our
artists, cultural producers, and creative community.

Our Vision: Art in Everything.

Building on the abundant cultural wealth and creativity of our community, the Arts Council envisions a New Orleans in which arts and culture play a pivotal role in all areas of policy, planning, and placemaking.
In pursuit of a more equitable, joyful, and resilient city, art and artists should be central to all community and economic development efforts – from public health to public safety, education to infrastructure.

Our Values: 

Community
• Where everyone feels a sense of belonging.
• Embodying diversity and inclusivity, striving for equity and justice.
• Based on collegiality and authentic partnerships.

Innovation
• Requiring risk-taking.
• In policy and practice.
• As a muscle to develop.

Creativity
• As New Orleans’ competitive advantage.
• Embedded within our residents.
• From any source.

Imagination
• As the premise of our work.
• As the key to limitless possibility.
• As a prerequisite for sustainable change.

Action
• Rooted in empathy.
• Informed by best practices and new ideas.
• In service of arts and culture.

Our Equity Statement:

The Arts Council New Orleans believes that all people are inherently creative. Our definition of art and artists is broad and inclusive of a wide range of creative practices, both formal and informal.

We believe artistic expression, access to and participation in meaningful cultural experiences are fundamental human rights.

Participation in the arts, enjoyment of meaningful cultural experiences, and an engaging and pleasing environment in which to live, work, and play should be accessible to all, regardless of socio-economic status, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or ability.

We operationalize our commitment to advancing equity in our work through our staff recruitment and hiring, board development, purchasing practices, and resource allocation. We strive to create equitable economic development for artists through training and opportunities.

We strive to support the creation of artistic programming that advances a sense of belonging, connection, and recognition for all our local and regional neighbors.

We advocate for and advance the development of a City in which equitable access to arts funding and programs for all arts organizations and artists is expected and delivered.