Nine years ago, Spokane Art School was forced to dissolve due to financial challenges. Today, thanks to increased fundraising and a strong endowment fund, the nonprofit organization has re-opened its doors with a new sense of purpose.
“We’ve sort of risen from the ashes. We’re calling it Spokane Art School V.2,” said Sue Bradley, president of the Spokane Art School board of directors.
Spokane Art School established three new funds at Innovia Foundation. The funds were created from the transfer of the school’s $1-million endowment from the Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture (MAC) Foundation, which has held the endowment since the school dissolved in 2008.
“Innovia Foundation offers the security, as well as the flexibility we need, to use part of that endowment to teach Spokane to make and enjoy art,” Bradley said.
In addition to providing art classes, Spokane Art School, located at 809 West Garland, develops programs to engage the broader community in the creation and appreciation of art. For example, the school launched Art on the Street, in which the school places large art easels along Garland and encourages the public to make art with help from practicing artists, free of charge.
Tad Wisenor, board vice president of Spokane Art School, said the school is poised to make a growing contribution to the applied arts in our region.
“We are pleased to have a permanent home and a significant endowment to support our future organizational health,” he said. “We seek to be a community-wide resource to all who make Spokane a richer place through their creative endeavors.”