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Montserrat, city of Beverly receive $75,000 from NEA to promote arts and culture

Posted by Ryan Mooney  July 12, 2012 11:56 AM

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The following was submitted by Jo Broderick, dean of college relations at Montserrat College of Art:

Montserrat College of Art, in collaboration with the city of Beverly and Beverly Main Streets, has been chosen to receive $75,000 of a $160,000 matching grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

The funds will be used for the planning, and implementation of an Arts and Cultural district in downtown Beverly.

“Montserrat was founded as an incubator to develop the next generation of creative thinkers and contributors to the creative economy,” Montserrat President Stephen D. Immerman said in a statement. “We relish the opportunity this grant offers to work with Beverly Main Streets and the city to broaden the scope of the college’s contributions beyond the campus, to make transformational change in the physical, social and economic climate, and create a sense of place in our downtown.

“Our work to conceive, implement and foster a thriving cultural district will have a lasting impact on future generations who will live, study, work and visit Beverly.”

The NEA announced on Thursday the allocation of $4.995 million in 44 states and the District of Columbia to 80 Our Town grant recipients. The grant supports creative place-making projects that help transform communities into lively, beautiful and sustainable areas with the arts at their core.

The projects aim to improve quality of life, encourage creative activity, create community identity and a sense of place, and help revitalize local economies.

"Cities and towns are transformed when you bring the arts – both literally and figuratively – into the center of them,” said NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman. “ I am proud to be partnering with these 80 communities and their respective arts, civic, and elected leaders."

According to a statement released by Montserrat, the plan put in place using the funds will be “a blueprint to connect, communicate, and celebrate the arts in all its forms, leveraging the downtown presence of Montserrat College of Art as the core.”

The NEA received 317 total applications for Our Town. Competition was strong, and the announcement of Montserrat as a recipient is “a testament to the artistic excellence and merit of the collaborative project.”

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Our Town grant support, visit the NEA web site.

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