2020 has been a year of hardship for many people and for many reasons. The pandemic’s impact has been particularly hard on our arts and culture organizations and creative workers, including economic losses from cancellations of their performance seasons, events, and even full closures of their nonprofit and for-profit local businesses. Layoffs, furloughs and job eliminations have devastated these cultural institutions and individual artists’ livelihoods, as well as many others who work in the creative and cultural sectors.
Recent surveys and research from the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), Colorado Creative Industries and Denver Arts & Venues, spells out just how catastrophic the losses are to the sector and our region and state’s creative economy. For example, with stages dark and holiday performances shuttered at the Denver Performing Arts Complex, which is typically the busiest time of year, more than 3,500 actors, singers, musicians, artists, back-stage crew, box office staff and more who bring more than 2,700 performances annually have been deeply impacted by the closures.
These holiday arts traditions we hold so dear simply can’t happen this year, as our public health demands greater loyalty to one another to keep us safe and end this pandemic. Rather than watch as beloved organizations that serve our communities and our entire region struggle to survive, businesses, government leaders and arts advocacy organizations from across the Denver metro area have come together to amplify the cultural and creative sectors’ urgent need.
During this holiday season, a collaborative public awareness campaign encourages local giving to the arts as a way to celebrate our beloved holiday arts traditions, as well as preserve our arts legacies and opportunities for wonder in the future.
The Arts through it All holidays campaign was launched on Dec. 1, 2020 in the Denver metro region building on the Arts through it All advocacy campaign developed early in the pandemic, which was originally launched on April 15, 2020. The original campaign focused on three core messages of Forgo Ticket Refunds, Donate Today and Support Colorado Artists, and the campaign branding and assets were used widely by arts and cultural organizations throughout the state to communicate with their stakeholders, patrons and donors. These messages are still just as relevant eight months into the pandemic, however the need is even more dire.
The latest evolution of the Arts through it All public awareness campaign for the holidays, has the tagline of Gifts of Art from the Heart and a call to action to Give – Gift – Shop to support local cultural organizations and artists and ensure arts and culture endure. The campaign wants the general arts loving public to remember arts and cultural organizations in their holiday gift giving or charitable giving. It will run through the holiday season, urging all who can to give back and support our local arts and culture organizations during their holiday giving.
The Arts through it All holidays campaign was generously funded in part by the City of Denver’s allocation of CARES Act coronavirus relief funds. Additional sponsors of the campaign include PNC Bank, Adams County, Denver Arts & Venues, City of Boulder and the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation. The campaign was managed and administered by Colorado Business Committee for the Arts (CBCA) in partnership with Denver Arts & Venues and the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).
VISIT DENVER and its Mile High Holidays are also supporting local arts and culture this holiday season.