California organizations and individuals landed more than $4 million in funding from the National Endowment for the Arts in the latest round of grant awards.
That amount represents 14 percent of the total awards distributed across the country. Nationally, 1,116 grants were given out for a total of $29.1 million.
"These new projects will continue to demonstrate the power the arts have to deepen value, build connections, and foster an atmosphere of creativity and innovation both at the community level and with individuals throughout the nation," said NEA Chairman Jane Chu in a written statement.
In California, 161 grants were awarded. Among the winners are four poets from California who received an NEA Literature Fellowship in Creative Writing: Lynn Xu of Laguna Niguel, Brandon Brown of Oakland, Javier Zamora of San Rafael, and Ellen Bass of Santa Cruz.
The award gives writers $25,000 toward writing, research, travel and career advancement. In all, 36 people were selected across the country.
The majority of the grant funding went toward the NEA's "Art Works" grants, which focus on fostering new art works and presenting existing art, as well as supporting public engagement and lifelong arts learning. The $2.5 million in Art Works grant funding went toward arts education.
In California, 14 Art Works arts education grants were awarded. The full list is available online, here's a selection of winners from Los Angeles.
- Unusual Suspects Theatre Co. — $20,000: To support theater arts aimed at improving theater, literacy and communication skills. Focused on students in foster care and the juvenile justice system.
- The Colburn School — $20,000: To support free music instruction for underserved middle school students.
- Ryman Arts — $40,000: To support free, pre-professional studio art classes for high school students.
- Inner-City Arts — $45,000: To support professional development in the arts for educators, most of whom work for the Los Angeles Unified School District.
- Harmony Project — $30,000: To support a year-round music education program known as Music Mentoring.
- Heart of Los Angeles Youth, Inc. — $70,000: To support an after-school youth orchestra program for elementary and middle school students.
The names of all the grant winners can be viewed on the NEA's website.