Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Fine Arts Fund Takes the Money and NYC

At the close of its successful community (sic) campaign that raised over $10 million, the Fine Arts Fund promised to announce a transition plan that will include a new name and a new mission. While the new name has yet to be released, the mission suggests an opening of a larger umbrella covering not only the local arts, but additional cultural institutions throughout Greater Cincinnati and its suburbs. The FAF states also its plans to move from focusing on the financial needs of the local arts to looking at how the arts impact our community.

So where is the money you donated to the Fine Arts Fund going if not to tend to the financial needs of the local arts?

Here, the FAF lists benefactors of the money collected during their capital campaign. As you might expect, the list includes many of the major arts and cultural organizations in the region from Northern Kentucky to Hamilton, Ohio. What this "complete list of investments in the arts" does not include is Resnicow Schroeder, a New York firm specializing in marketing the arts.

Earlier this year, Gov. Ted Strickland named Cincinnati as Ohio's Marketing Hub:

"Cincinnati's Hub designation will assist this region's already strong business and educational community in attracting young creative talent, new companies and job opportunities in consumer marketing to Ohio," Strickland said. "Targeted investments in Ohio's urban regions and businesses are a critical piece of our economic development strategy to create jobs and strengthen Ohio's economy."

Did the Fine Arts Fund not know this when they rejected marketing and re-branding campaign proposals from local marketing firms merely days after (before?) collecting over $10 million from the community in the name of the local arts? What happened to their support of local artists when they decided to hire New York branding artists?

Rumor has it the Fine Arts Fund will eliminate the word "Arts" in their re-branding strategy. We'll see what the FAF has to say when they formally unveil their new brand, but right now it appears not all money donated is spent locally and the financial well-being of the arts has been back-burnered for marketing of the FAF.


Anonymous said...

A lot of these area nonprofit only come to local PR firms when they want pro-bono handouts, guilting the firms to "give back" to the community, and then they bring a list of demands a mile long. Of course, meanwhile, they'll then gladly toss a few hundred thousand at an out of town firm for a one time gig. Sad.

Anonymous said...

the one advantage of using out of town consultants is the opportunity for those all important out of town junkets to "consult" with them. God forbid one would have to be stuck here in Cincinnati when you can spend contributors money in the Big Apple.