Q1 YOUR PERSONAL CONNECTION TO THE ARTS
The pandemic has been challenging for so many in CT and in so many ways. How have you personally benefited from the arts or creative expression in the last few months? What local arts experiences have you missed most during the shutdown?
I have personally benefited from the arts or creative expression every day in all possible outlets. During COVID with the inability to go places I found myself seeking creativity in non-conforming ways. For example, admiring a tv commercial. TV Commercials are not your typical avenue for artistic discovery; however, someone has spent a significant amount of time and energy and COVID allowed me to slow down and appreciate very basic creativity.
Q2 ARTS + ECONOMIC RECOVERY
CT can’t recover without the arts. Arts and culture are key for CT’s economic recovery. Creative industries pump $9 billion into the state and account for 3.5% of CT’s total economy. Our non-profit arts organizations support 23,000 jobs, generate $800 million annually, and return $7 back in tax revenue for every $1 invested by the state. How will you help harness the power of the arts for CT’s economic recovery?
Providing access to the arts is the number one response to ensuring we harness the power of the arts for Connecticut’s economic development. The arts must be a central component to a plan to reopening Connecticut.
Q3 ARTS HEAL + REBUILD
Creativity helps us process loss, fight loneliness, and create vibrant, resilient communities that attract and retain residents, businesses, and visitors. What do you think is an important role for arts and culture to play in healing and rebuilding the social fabric of our cities and towns?
I believe that art plays an indispensable role in our culture, social fabric and communities. As we start to reopen Connecticut I would like to see more opportunities for the arts to flourish in our communities.
Q4 ARTS SUPPORT RACIAL & SOCIAL JUSTICE
The pandemic has deepened existing divides in Connecticut, particularly along the lines of race and class. The arts create shared experiences that can unite people and bridge divides to acknowledge the strength in our differences. Do you believe the arts can help build racial and social justice in Connecticut? If so, how?
Definitely. Art can create countless emotions that can be very effective in communicating a message. Art that is explicit, straightforward and creative will leave a lasting impression on individuals.
Q5 CT NEEDS HELP FROM THE ARTS
With 62% of artists unemployed and most arts organizations unable to reopen, the industry needs emergency support to recover and thrive. CT’s arts and culture sector has suffered an estimated $400 million in economic losses. Will you support emergency funding to support the arts industry in Connecticut? If so, from what source and at what level?
I support the arts industry in Connecticut and funding that is needed to ensure its survival. The impact of COVID-19 on our State has not yet been fully realized. Without a full understanding of the burden caused by COVID it is difficult to state with any degree of certainty how aid can be given to the arts industry; however, it is clear that art plays a significant role in our communities and we will need to protect its future.
Create the Vote CT is a nonpartisan public education campaign to raise awareness and support for the arts among voters and candidates running for public office. CT Arts Alliance launched the first Create the Vote CT during the gubernatorial election in 2018 and inspired focus on the arts during Governor Lamont’s transition and helped stabilize statewide public funding for the first time since the Great Recession. The initiative was originally conceived and developed at MASSCreative, a state arts advocacy organization in Massachusetts.