In Defense of Arts Funding

Dinah Cardin

“Each day, 4.8 million Americans go to work in Arts and Culture industries. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Arts contributed $730 billion to our GDP—which is larger than Construction, Transportation, and Travel & Tourism.” – AmericansForTheArts.org

Cultural institutions across the country are reeling from news that the White House plans to slash or eliminate funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The arts play a critical role in today’s economy and also support the rising creative and innovation-based economy. Read more

Benton Painting Native Americans

Dinah Cardin

Thomas Hart Benton, The Lost Hunting Ground, 1927-28. From the mural series American Historical Epic, 1920-28. Oil on canvas, 60 1/4 x 42 1/8 in. The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri. Bequest of the artist. Photo by Jamison Miller. © Benton Testamentary Trusts/UMB Bank Trustee/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

The following is a condensed and edited conversation that took place inside the galleries of PEM’s American Epics: Thomas Hart Benton and Hollywood exhibition Thursday, August 6 with PEM’s Curator of American Art Austen Barron Bailly, Curator of Native American Art Karen Kramer and those who participated in the museum’s summer fellowship program for Native Americans pursuing professional museum studies. The 2015 fellows are: Halena Kapuni-Reynolds, Alex Nahwegabow, Ashley Tsosie-Mahieu and Jordan Dresser. The Benton exhibition closes September 7. Read more

Learning as a PEM Guide

Henry M. Frechette, Jr.

Thomas Hart Benton painting a section of the mural A Social History of the State of Missouri, 1936. Courtesy of Missouri State Archives.

I’m a research guide for PEM. While I don’t have specific art history or a fine arts background, I do like visiting museums and have really enjoyed researching a bibliography for other PEM Guides as they’ve prepared for the exhibition American Epics: Thomas Hart Benton and Hollywood. Read more