Eric Gurevich

Imagine Greater Louisville 2020 Sparks Creativity and Compassion
Jennifer Lawrence Arts Fund at the Fund for the Arts and Metro Council’s support fuels 24 unique arts and culture projects and more

LOUISVILLE, KY, DECEMBER 15, 2017- Twenty four arts and cultural projects have been awarded project funding as part of Imagine Greater Louisville 2020: An Arts and Cultural Vision to Transform the Region (IGL 2020).  In August 2017, the IGL 2020 Steering Committee announced $500,000 in funding from Metro Louisville and the Jennifer Lawrence Arts Fund at the Fund for the Arts (JLAF) to implement the strategies of the community plan and opened a call for proposals. 187 proposals were submitted totaling $4.4 million in requests.  The 24 unique projects awarded grants will impact residents in every Metro District in Jefferson County through a wide variety of art forms. Projects range from a sensory-friendly production of Hamlet at Western Middle School for the Arts and an artist refugee program with Kentucky Refugee Ministries to a new public concert series through the Louisville Federation of Musicians.

“We’re making great strides leveraging arts and culture to address complex community issues,” said Mayor Greg Fischer.

“We are proud to leverage these grants to bring creativity, hope, and excitement into so many different areas across Metro Louisville,” said Councilwoman Marianne Butler, District 15. “These projects range from addressing bullying in the classroom and overcoming trauma to supporting cultural professionals through resource utilization.”

Funding from the JLAF will be made available for regional projects outside of Jefferson County and will create impact measurement tools, support specific initiatives, and lay groundwork for future phases of IGL 2020. Specific initiatives include Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion workshops for arts and culture organizations, an assessment of arts programs provided in school districts across the region, as well as a new regional promotional campaign leveraging arts and culture to increase tourism and to bolster talent attraction.

“The Jennifer Lawrence Arts Fund is proud to support the implementation of Imagine Greater Louisville 2020,” said Meredith Lawrence, Director of the Jennifer Lawrence Arts Fund at the Fund for the Arts. “We are incredibly excited to ensure that this community plan will continue to positively impact kids, families, and everyone across the region.”

Fund for the Arts stewarded the launch of IGL 2020 in spring of 2017 to provide a shared vision for the role arts, culture, and creativity can play in helping the region grow while addressing vital community issues. Each awarded project addresses one or more of the five key strategies of IGL 2020: Access, Education, Cultivation, Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion, and Promotion. Of the 24 proposals funded, 18 focus specifically on at-risk neighborhoods, 16 directly on engaging youth, and 6 with specific populations. Visit and see below for more information.

The review process of the 187 grants submitted by arts organizations, non-profits, schools, partnerships, and individual artists included two levels of assessment as well as the opportunity for public comment. 22 local arts and civic leaders conducted the first round of review with each submission receiving a score from at least three reviewers. Reviewers from peer cities (Nashville, Lexington, and Cincinnati) then reviewed the proposals that scored in the top half of the total group of submissions.

“We are thrilled to bring the priorities and action items to life in order to positively impact all of Greater Louisville,” said Penny Peavler and Roger Cude, Co-chairs of the Imagine Greater Louisville 2020 Steering Committee. “It’s gratifying to see our creative community come together to tackle many of our greatest challenges through arts and culture. We’re able to fund just over 10 percent of this first round of proposals. This shows us a number of things, namely that our creatives are hungry to affect change, the funding needs are vast, and more importantly, our work has just begun.”

2017 Grant Recipients:

  • Discover Drama—Resilience, Bellewood School – $4,810
  • Fiber Arts Community in South Louisville, The Lou Tate Foundation
    d.b.a. The Little Loomhouse – $3,385
  • Peacebuilding and Community Strengthening through Art, Side by Side Studio, Inc. – $5,000
  • Explore More, Play Cousins Collective – $3,126
  • LaCucarachita Children’s Production, Teatro Tercera Llamada – $4,900
  • 20th Annual Louisville Jewish Film Festival, Jewish Community of Louisville, Inc. – $4,800
  • Seven Generations, Bridge Kids International – $5,000
  • Best Practices in Access and Inclusion: Sensory-Friendly HAMLET, Western Middle School for the Arts – $3,840
  • Communities of Iroquois, Louisville Story Program – $7,500
  • Puppet Hero Parade, Squallis Puppeteers – $20,075
  • Taking Art in a New Direction, Louisville Visual Art – $17,650
  • Project Ready: LYRICS, Louisville Urban League – $10,000
  • Mixing Matters, Rhythm Science Sound – $15,450
  • Louisville Cultural Accessibility Association, Kentucky Center for the Arts Foundation – $11,650
  • Sarabande Writing Labs, Sarabande Books, Inc. – $8,850
  • Relevance to the Present. Discovering Slave Narratives. Understanding Ourselves. Portia White – $10,750
  • The G.A.P Cultivation Program and Documentary, The Gap Felony Prevention Program – $24,933
  • We Create: Artists and Refugees Celebrate Making Louisville Home, Kentucky Refugee Ministries, Inc. – $20,522
  • Imagine 2020 Concert Series, Louisville Federation of Musicians – $10,000
  • Capacity Building & Program Launch, ELEVATOR Artist Resource – $20,000
  • Producing Art In Neighborhoods Together Open Call, Center For Neighborhoods – $20,000
  • Portraits of Pride, William M. Duffy, Sculptor – $11,700
  • Music Together, Yani Vozos – $15,800
  • K-8 Arts Integration Teacher Leadership Team, Academic Services/Jefferson County Public Schools – $22,862

About Fund for the Arts
Fund for the Arts is a regional nonprofit with the mission to maximize the arts to drive economic development, education, and quality of life in our community. The Fund conducts one of the oldest united arts campaigns in the country and supports world-class institutions, community organizations, and arts in education. Fund for the Arts leads collective action across the arts and cultural sector to deliver greater impact in our community. For more information, visit

About Imagine Greater Louisville 2020
Imagine Greater Louisville 2020 is a call to action to leverage the region’s creative resources to realize the full potential of its creative, prosperous future together. The community-based plan was created under the leadership of a cross-sector, 28-person steering committee that engaged 5,000+ community members through public meetings, interviews, surveys and more. Their collective voices identified five priorities, fifteen strategies, and fifty-six recommended actions. For more information, visit


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