Through education and legislation, the Arts & Business Council and its Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts program (VLA) continues to successfully advocate for the arts. The VLA provides artists with proactive legal information through its popular educational programs, relying on the expertise of its staff and panel attorneys. Examples of previous seminar topics include estate planning for visual artists, non-profit incorporation, copyright, trademark, and immigration.
An example of our work
Massachusetts Legislature’s passage of significant changes to the Consignment of Fine Art law has inspired a series of workshops and educational offerings to better educate artists and art dealers about their rights and obligations under the new law. The VLA worked diligently with other lawyers, the Artist Foundation and agencies to pass the changes now reflected in the present law.
- Click here to read the revised Consignment of Fine Art Law
- Click here to learn how the changes affect artists and art galleries
- Click here if you are an attorney wanting to learn more about the legislative changes
The Arts & Business Council supports the efforts of numerous organizations working hard to advocate for artists’ rights and for arts related funding.
MASSCreative works with creative leaders, working artists, arts educators and arts and cultural supporters to empower creative organizations and the public with a powerful voice to advocate for the resources and attention necessary to build vibrant, connected, and creative communities.
Here in Massachusetts, creativity is everywhere. From Pittsfield to Provincetown, it is more than something to see, listen to, enjoy, wonder at and remember. It is a way forward. Creativity in its many forms has unlimited potential to build strong, connected communities and a better quality of life for all of us.
MASSCreative is here to make it happen. We are dedicated to helping citizens like you and leaders of local creative organizations win the attention and resources necessary to make Massachusetts a creativity-driven state from the ground up. We are passionate about youth arts programs and arts education and are devoted to strengthening the availability and quality of this programming in every corner of the Commonwealth. Click here to learn more.
The Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC)
The MCC is a state agency committed to building a central place for the arts, sciences, and humanities in communities across Massachusetts through a combination of grant programs, partnerships and nonprofit cultural organizations, schools, communities, and individual artists. The MCC website has tips on successfully advocating for arts, sciences and humanities.
Arts|Learning encourages academic and artistic excellence and reform in teaching and curriculum development for preschool through college levels through the advancement of policies, practices, programs and partnerships, building networks and alliances between the education system, the art community, and government agencies and organizations. The A|L Networking and Advocacy Division provides information, resources and programming to help individuals advocate for the arts in their communities, whether across the Commonwealth or Massachusetts or in any other state or region of the United States. The A|L websitealso has a section for tips on successfully advocating for arts in education and is Massachusetts’s representative in the Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network.
Massachusetts Art Education Association (MAEA)
Massachusetts Art Education Association (MAEA) is the state member of the National Art Education Association (NAEA). The NAEA is the leading professional membership organization exclusively for visual arts educators across the United States. The mission of NAEA is to promote art education through professional development, service, advancement of knowledge, and leadership.
Western Massachusetts Arts Alliance
The Western Massachusetts Arts Alliance fosters community-based arts activity through building relationships and collaborations among diverse cultural organizations, artists, educators, and community groups. You can get involved by joining as an individual member, amateur or professional artist member, business member, or arts organization member. Find the organization’s profile on NEFA’s Creative Ground Directory.
Preservation Massachusetts is a statewide non-profit preservation organization dedicated to preserving Massachusetts’s historic and cultural heritage by actively promoting the preservation of historic building and landscapes in an effort to stimulate economic development, tourism, and the retention of community character. Presently, this organization partners with Architectural Conservation Trust and Massachusetts Association of Olmsted Parks to strengthen its advocacy efforts. The organization provides steps for successful advocacy and offers workshops and programs in matters of preservation.
The Boston Foundation
The Boston Foundation was one of the first community foundations and today is one of the largest, with assets of almost $650 million. The Foundation is made up of over 750 separate funds, which have been established by hundreds of donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes. The Foundation sponsors special initiatives and the exploration thereof and works with other organizations and with government to find new ways to build the Boston community.
Americans for the Arts
Americans for the Arts is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to representing and serving local communities in the promotion of the arts and arts education. The goals of the organization include generating public and private sector policies and resources and building an individual awareness and appreciation of the value of the arts and arts education. Americans for the Arts is part of a greater network of national associations that collaborate on resources for promoting the arts in Elementary and Secondary Education Act (a.k.a. No Child Left Behind) reauthorization and appropriations efforts.
Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education
The Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network (KCAAEN) is a national coalition of non-profit Alliances for Arts Education working in partnership with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to support policies, practices, programs, and partnerships in favor of arts in the education system. Members of the KCAAEN work to build collaborations between schools, community partners, and cultural institutions, engage in public speaking on behalf of arts education, generate resources for arts education leaders and practitioners, provide professional development, and recognize innovation and achievement to those who demonstrate outstanding support for arts education.
Have your voice be heard
Please know and contact your legislative leaders with these existing search tools. Many of these advocacy organization have email blasts to let you know about current issues and legislation that is affecting the arts in your community. Knowing who and how to contact your representative an important step in advocacy.
Massachusetts State Legislature: The state legislature web site for Massachusetts provides information on pending legislation and other legislative activity.
Be heard by representatives who will support the arts
Contact your local representatives and take action on specific issues.