Albuquerque Mayor Keller Announces $500,000 To Support Creative Economy Relief Efforts

Article Pixel
Albuquerque Mayor Keller Announces $500,000 To Support Creative Economy Relief Efforts

The Creative Economy is the sixth pillar of Mayor Tim Keller's economic strategy, and the Cultural Services Department believes it is important to recognize and respond to the immediate and long-term effect the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has on our culturally critical organizations, our artists and creatives, as well as the broad creative economy.
The Cultural Services Department (CSD) is ready to activate opportunities for arts organizations and local creatives from all backgrounds that will help them sustain their organizations and the creative ecosystem of our community.

City of Albuquerque Urban Enhancement Fund Arts and Culture Project Recovery Funds for Organizations

As COVID-19 is having a significant impact on the creative economy, CSD has identified $300,000 in reserves in the Urban Enhancement Trust Fund (UETF) that will be immediately directed for funding to Albuquerque arts and cultural non-profit organizations to enable them to continue to creatively provide arts and cultural programming for the community and employment for artists. The use of these funds will not diminish the upcoming FY21-22 UETF funding budget.
The funds are limited to Albuquerque city limits-based, non-governmental, non-profit organizations whose missions are to provide arts and cultural programming for audiences based primarily in Albuquerque. Institutionally aligned (friends or support organizations of local or state institutions) are not eligible.
Awards to eligible non-profits will be based on the organization's resiliency, cultural vitality, audience engagement, ability to use funds to directly to employ artists through contract or other work and commitment towards becoming an organization of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility (in keeping with the adopted 2020 UETF DEIA Statement). Applications will be evaluated by a special UETF sub-committee. Applications open on April 6 and are due by 5 p.m. on April 14. The application can be found at

Albuquerque Creatives DIY Media

CSD is directing up to $100,000 through its Media Resources and Community Events divisions to contract with local creatives and artists to create engaging, original, and creative video content that is ready-to-air and stream on the city's public access channels, social media, and other digital platforms. CSD seeks creative pitches for finished videos ranging from 15 to 60 minutes in length that showcase the breadth of creativity in the Albuquerque community. Project budgets will range from $75 to $2,500.

All projects should be proposed and created adhering to strict social distancing standards. Examples include but are not limited to backyard or living room concerts, dance performances or lessons, stand up comedy, monologues, history and cultural talks, and cooking, art making, and craft cocktail demonstrations or how-tos. Applications for creative pitches will open on April 6 and will be reviewed on a rolling basis through May 1, 2020. Applications can be found at Questions can be emailed to

Youth Engagement Digital Programming

CSD is directing up to $50,000 to fund contracts with local creatives and teaching artists who can create original, engaging video content designed to engage youth in educational activities connected to arts and culture that can be broadcast and streamed on the city's public access channels and/or other digital platforms (Facebook Live, Zoom, interactive websites, etc.). CSD invites proposals for 15, 30, and 45-minute finished videos, one-time digital outreach events, or multi-session classes from artists in the Albuquerque community. Project budgets will range from $250 to $2,500. Applications for creative pitches will be open on April 6 and will be reviewed on a rolling basis through May 1, 2020. Applications can be found at

Mayor's Creative Youth Corps

The Mayor's Creative Youth Corps is a retooling of the Mayor's Summer Art Institute first implemented in 1999 by Mayor Jim Baca. Now in its 21st year, Mayor Keller's administration is refocusing the program into becoming the city's professional level, paid summer internship program for high school aged students to apply for creative and/or arts leadership internships offered in a variety of creative disciplines across the entire city.

The Mayor's Creative Youth Corps internship program will take place June and July of 2020 and not only prepare youth with job development skills, but would also build a foundation of creative community networks through structured cohort activities in addition to the actual internship.

Creative Quarantine

In order to stay connected with creatives and to provide artists with a connection to the community, CSD invites artists, creatives, and makers to check in and introduce themselves (via video) and report on what they are currently working on, how they are staying creative during a time of uncertainty, how access to resources may have changed, etc. Videos (5 minutes or less) can be uploaded to DropBox ( today through May 30. CSD will create compilation videos for One Albuquerque Media featuring work that will inform and inspire the public i.e. potential audiences, consumers and patrons.
These compilation videos will also distributed through other digital platforms, such as, during weekly social engagement roundups. While this effort does not come with a monetary investment, it is a unique in-kind opportunity to connect with diverse audiences.

Technical Support for Creatives

CSD senior leadership along with experienced business coaches and consultants will staff a series of meetings for arts organizations and artists who are pursuing emergency funding opportunities (local, regional, and national) in order provide technical assistance and direct feedback on applications. In addition, the Public Art division continues to compile and disseminate short and long-term resources and opportunities for artists and arts organizations. Zoom calls will take place from 11 a.m. to noon on April 10, 17, and 24. Please email by noon on Thursday, April 9 for a meeting ID.
Other relief opportunities for individual artists include 516 Arts' Fulcrum Fund and Arts Hub's Artist Relief Fund. The Albuquerque Community Foundation and United Way of Central New Mexico has set up an Emergency Action Fund to support non-profit organizations struggling with lost and non-recoverable revenue expenses due to COVID-19.


Arts Orgs

Related Articles View More Albuquerque Stories   Shows

More Hot Stories For You