The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced last week that it has awarded a $35,000, two–year grant to Venice Arts to support the expansion of its highly regarded photography, writing, and media arts programs for youth living at Mar Vista Gardens, a low–income housing development in the Mar Vista area.
According to Venice Arts’ Assistant Director, Alexa Adamo, “This is our third grant–award from the NEA, and our first multi–year grant. It will allow us to significantly deepen our programs for youth at Mar Vista Gardens, which we have been providing for over eight years. It is always an honor to be recognized by a national organization for the quality and impact of our work.”
The students recently completed a five-month project, Shooting Back from Mar Vista Gardens, which explored life at the Gardens, and was funded by the City of Los Angeles’ Cultural Affairs Department, among others.
For 12 years, Venice Arts has provided free multidisciplinary art programs to youth in Venice, Mar Vista and other communities locally, nationally, and internationally.
Documentary photography has long been one of its core programs. Past projects have included “The Girls Project,” which explored female identity in four communities across America, and “Picturing Race,” which documented the 2001 World Conference Against Racism, South Africa, as well as race and identity in Los Angeles in 2002Venice Arts’ documentary program is led by its creative director, Pulitzer Prize nominated photographer Jim Hubbard.