Queens City Council members allocated $12,500 for the Queens Council on the Arts on Friday to fund services and programming that will help individual artists and arts organizations throughout Queens.
Council Members Leroy Comrie (D- St. Albans), Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) and Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) have been consistent supporters of the association for the past three years.
The funding came just after the Queens Council on the Arts moved into its new location at 37-11 35 Ave. in Astoria. The office, with its creative workspace, is on the Kaufman Astoria Studios Campus and held its grand opening ceremony on June 22 during the Queens Art Express Block Party, with Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) leading the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) and Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria) also earmarked funds this year.
“The Queens Council on the Arts has helped cultivate talent throughout the borough and I am pleased to have been able to allocate funds which supported their endeavors,” Comrie said in a written statement. “Their new location in Astoria will also help to expand these great initiatives and I am looking forward to seeing what they will accomplish in the future.”
The monies will go towards art service programs including the “High School to Arts School Portfolio Development Program,” which gives 53 underprivileged students opportunities toward art college admissions and scholarship awards — this year 15 students earned a total of $462,560 in scholarship money — and 3rd Space, a workspace where artists can convene, develop their work and share ideas.
Last week, the Queens Council on the Arts announced the 2013-2014 Build Your Own Business workshop season, which will focus on skill-building and hands-on learning with industry experts to offer 500 artists the tools they need to turn creative work into financially sustainable practices. For information visit queenscouncilarts.org.