BCAA acts as a catalyst to incubate, stimulate and sustain a thriving arts community in Boulder County.
To achieve this mission, BCAA:
-Ignites interest in the arts by promoting diverse art opportunities and
supporting all performing, visual and emerging arts disciplines
-Nurtures the arts by coordinating collaboration among and between the art
disciplines and offering continuing professional development to improve business competencies
-Fosters a culture of experimentation and innovation in all art forms.
-Grows the financial capacities of our organizations and expands their financial connections and opportunities for earned income
-Develops BCAA's capacities and strategies to respond to tomorrow's challenges
Boulder County Arts Alliance is the oldest multi-disciplinary arts service agency in Boulder County. Founded in 1966 at the Arts & Humanities Assembly of Boulder, the original mission was to assist artists and create a center for the arts in Boulder.
BCAA has evolved in its view of how to best support artists and art organizations. In the 1980s and 1990s, BCAA established three grant-making programs: the Neodata Endowment Grants (to sustain the arts); the Addison Grants (mini-grants for emerging artists), and the Milash Grant (for representational painters). BCAA has awarded over $1 million in small grants to talented emerging and established artists and cultural organizations through these programs. The Addison and Milash programs were donor-advised, intended to serve the community for a limited time, and are no longer available. BCAA continues to act as the steward for the Endowment, which is managed to insure arts funding in perpetuity.
In recent years, BCAA has become the administrator for three new donor advised funds: Arts for All Children, Pathways to Jazz and the Martha Kate Thomas Fund for Artists (a bequest gift to the Community Foundation Serving Boulder County).
BCAA maintains its focus of helping artists become financially grounded and business-wise through grants, fiscal sponsorship and workshops that teach business skills. BCAA is increasingly engaged in community building, inclusiveness, diversity and equity programs and arts advocacy efforts. Programs that help accomplish these goals are our Business of Arts Workshops, Art @River Bend, Boulder Arts Week, Artists & Athletes at the Bolder Boulder, and more.
"BCAA's Fiscal Sponsorship program has allowed me to easily apply for grant opportunities. The small organization size has been perfect to move quickly with requests and deadlines. Again and again, I have been so thankful to rely on BCAA's quick response time when I find a grant opportunity at the last moment. For example, this year I was able to apply to the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation's USArtists International grant on short notice. The grant supported my international tour to the Netherlands. Additionally, I believe being sponsored by BCAA, a local Boulder organization, has raised Boulder's reputation as an arts destination, now internationally thanks to the performances this year. I always hope that I can open the door for other artists in the area to receive funding that has primarily been allocated to coastal city centers.
- Michelle Ellsworth, Dancer and Multimedia artist and recipient of the Doris Duke Impact Award
"Partnering with you allows the Society for Creative Aging to bring the artistic talents of
seniors to the community to be enjoyed by the public and especially by the seniors in
--Katherine Campbell, President of the Society for Creative Aging
"We are thrilled and proud to partner with you on behalf of the many Boulder Valley
School District music classrooms we will work with because of this funding. Thank you
for your time and effort!"
--Travis LaBerge, Executive Director, Parlando School for the Arts
"Although I applied for this grant with measured expectations and not entirely sure of the
direction this project would take, I must say that this is truly one of the proudest
accomplishments of my life. Having the additional funds allowed for me to set aside a
large portion of time to commit to composing for this project."
--Paul Shin, Jazz Musician and Pathways to Jazz Grant recipient
"Receiving this grant is a HUGE boost to me and the students I teach to do metal
sculptures. Having just visited the flood area again and seeing my welder and
equipment still piled up in the debris, I was in a sad place trying to figure out how to
replace and rebuild my loss. I am so very grateful for your consideration and funding."
--Connie Burton Burkhart, Visual Artist and Martha Kate Thomas Fund recipient
"Happy new year indeed! This is really a dream come true and I'm so excited! I have
moved around my work schedule to dedicate three months of the summer just to make
time and space to really take advantage of this opportunity and get reacquainted with
my creativity. I am deeply appreciative of your efforts."
--Brenda Cleary, Painter, Poet and Martha Kate Thomas Fund recipient