News & Events

Notices for partners, news for artists, announcements from the field, job postings.

The Contributions of Renata Petroni

Posted: Wednesday, March 25th, 2015 at 5:19 pm in News

Renata PetroniAs of January 1, 2015, Renata Petroni, director of the International Program for the National Performance Network (NPN), has retired from her direct work in international cultural exchange to pursue her career as an interior designer. Several years ago, she returned to school and got her degree in design. While it is a great loss for the international cultural exchange field, it is exciting that Renata is working full-time in an area where she has great passion and talent.

Renata has worked internationally since 1980 when she joined The Kitchen first as director of special events and then as The Kitchen touring program director. She then worked at Dance Theater Workshop as director of the National Performance Network, NPN’s first dedicated staff person, and The Suitcase Fund, programs that sought to increase touring, commissioning and to encourage cultural exchange. Subsequently, Petroni spent two years as managing director of Teatro Central, a multi-purpose theater specially built for the Universal EXPO 92 in Seville, Spain. In 1993 she founded her own production company, Two Moon, which produced new works by many artists and coordinated the Polverigi Festival in Italy from 1998 to 2000. In May 2000, Renata Petroni became director of the Projects and Partnerships division at Arts International (AI), a New York based not-for-profit organization dedicated to the development, support and promotion of global cultural interchange in the visual and performing arts worldwide. After the closing of AI, Ms. Petroni joined NPN’s International Program, designed to increase cultural exchange and knowledge building between the United States and Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as with Asia.

“Renata built NPN’s International Program,” says MK Wegmann, NPN/VAN president and CEO. “She developed a multi-national system of exchange based on long-term relationships, reciprocity and equity. NPN will forever be in her debt and the groundwork she laid will continue into the future. Her leadership will be missed.”

For the time being, MK Wegmann will direct NPN’s international program. She has been involved in the program since its inception and has been part of the development of its various programs. Kyoko Yoshida, the founder and director of the U.S./Japan Cultural Trade Network (CTN), will coordinate the U.S.-Japan Connection and the U.S.-Korea Connection, where she has been assisting Renata for the past three years. Kyoko has served the performing arts field for 30 years as a presenter, producer and consultant. Elizabeth Doud will continue to coordinate the Performing Americas Program, which since 2002 has fostered cultural exchange between Latin America and the Caribbean with the United States.

NPN’s programs in the global arena remain a high priority to NPN, complementing its National Programs with our NPN/VAN Partners in the United States, and our Local Program in New Orleans.

And, thank you, Renata.

NPN/VAN Welcomes its newest staff member…

Posted: Wednesday, March 25th, 2015 at 5:15 pm in News

Sage CrumpMeet NPN/VAN’s newest team member, Sage Crump, program manager for Leveraging a Network for Equity (LANE). You may recognize Sage from her previous work with NPN/VAN as multi-tenant arts facility project manager, where she helped develop NPN/VAN’s new home, Arts Estuary 1024. Although based in New Orleans, Sage works nationally as a culture strategist with a social justice focus where her work leverages art and creative practice for the cultural transformation of systemic oppressions. Sage’s work with artists such as Detroit-based Complex Movements highlights the way shifts in intention can create new strategies that intersect artistic practice, organizing and movement building. Sage serves on the National Advisory Committee for Women of Color in the Arts, the board of the Center for Media Justice, is a member of Alternate ROOTS and is board vice-chair for Art2Action. Welcome Sage!

Leveraging a Network for Equity (LANE): A New NPN/VAN Program

Posted: Wednesday, March 25th, 2015 at 3:36 pm in News

by Sage Crump
LANE Project Manager

Over the course of many years, NPN/VAN staff and board have observed that long-term organizational stability has been a consistent struggle for some NPN/VAN Partners, especially organizations of color, geographically isolated and/or small to mid-sized community-based groups. Additionally over the past decade, the NPN/VAN Network has lost over ten organizations of color. Many organizations are suffering from multiple years of struggling to make-do with insufficient resources, which speaks to a larger systemic problem.

Leveraging a Network for Equity is a collaborative national capitalization program between the National Performance Network/Visual Artists Network and the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF®). LANE will deliver methodology and resources to address the sustainability challenges faced by organizations of color, geographically isolated, and/or small to mid-size community-based groups. Unlike similar efforts in the past that focused on large arts institutions, LANE focuses on organizations that are most vulnerable to shifts in the field that can have devastating consequences.

As an existing network with a focus on relationship building, NPN/VAN is uniquely positioned to tackle the issue of systemic financial inequalities within the arts and cultural infrastructure of the U.S. For more than 30 years, NFF® has helped nonprofit organizations connect “money to mission.” This partnership will provide education, financial advice, and capital that is relevant to this sector and will enable critical arts organizations to achieve their missions. NPN/VAN and NFF® have initiated a pilot capitalization project that moves beyond a conversation about the importance of equity into one of strategy and action.

LANE is an eight-year initiative that builds the financial capacity of the organizations involved in four ways. LANE supports cohorts of organizations with diagnostics, financial education, recovery, and risk capital. The current diagnosis, education and planning stages are funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This initiative is conceptualized to allow for careful planning, continuous learning and iterative evaluation. NPN/VAN is excited about this partnership and its potential for the Network and the field.

Alliance of Artists Communities – Upcoming Events

Posted: Wednesday, February 18th, 2015 at 1:33 pm in Events

2015 Emerging Program Institute
04/21/15 – 04/23/15
Omaha, NE

Connect with Funders + Residency Leaders

Registration is now open for the 2015 Emerging Program Institute at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, Nebraska – April 21-23.

Wondering if this program is right for you? The Emerging Program Institute is designed for a diverse group of participants – from those in the idea phase of creating an artist colony to those working with an established institution to develop a new residency program. The Institute brings together residency leaders, funders, and artists from across the county, highlights best practices and new models, and covers everything from growing your funding base to matching artist selection with mission.

Read more.

2015 Conference
10/13/15 – 10/16/15
Providence, RI

Explore the ways in which we can advance today’s artists and their role in developing healthy, vibrant, engaged communities. Join arts leaders, funders, policy-makers, board members, educators, artists, and others from across the globe for three days of performances, trainings, tours, and talks. All are welcome!


NPN/VAN – Celebrating Carnival!

Posted: Tuesday, February 10th, 2015 at 5:40 pm in News

It’s that time of year again in the Crescent City. Tuesday, February 17 is Mardi Gras and the NPN/VAN office will be closed. The office will be open on Monday, February 16, and Wednesday, February 18, but only partially staffed on those days. We’ll be back at near full-strength on Thursday, February 19.

We love the new office, but we’re no longer on a parade route. We’ll have to make do with a photo from a past year.

Muses 2014

E-Newsletter / January 2015

Posted: Monday, February 2nd, 2015 at 5:45 pm in E-Newsletters

NALAC Fund for the Arts
– Applying Just Got Easier

Posted: Thursday, January 29th, 2015 at 2:06 pm in Opportunities

The National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC) announces the launch of the 2015 NALAC Fund for the Arts application cycle. Reforms to the 2015 grant cycle have been implemented to streamline the application process, increase access, go paperless, broaden the panelist pool and expand funding opportunities for all Latino artists and arts organizations.

  • Phase 1 Application: All applicants will complete a simplified online Profile, Project Overview and Statement of Intent by the deadline of Thursday, February 19, 2015. No additional materials will need to be uploaded in this initial Phase 1.
  • Phase 1 Review: All applications submitted by the February 19 deadline will be evaluated by a diverse peer review panel who will be vetting the most competitive, highest quality submissions.
  • Phase 2 Finalists: Applicants receiving the highest scores and commendations in Phase 1 will be invited to submit a more comprehensive grant proposal packet to enter into Phase 2. Invitations to apply in Phase 2 will be sent out in early spring.

Funding Categories

NFA Grants for Latino Artists and Ensembles that support the work of individual artists and ensembles in all disciplines.

  • Project Grant
  • Master Artist Grant
  • San Antonio Artist Project Grant

NFA Grants for Latino Arts Organizations support the work of arts organizations whose primary mission is focused on Latino arts and culture in any arts discipline.

  • Project Grant
  • General Operating Support

Please visit NALAC’s website for more details on the grants, qualifications, deadlines, link to apply, and there’s an FAQ,

Grand Opening of Arts Estuary 1024

Posted: Tuesday, January 13th, 2015 at 4:32 pm in Events

Join the celebration! We’ll have food, drink and music.

Thursday, January 22, 2015
6 – 9:00 P.M.
1024 Elysian Fields Avenue, New Orleans

in conjunction with the closing of Dawn DeDeaux’s “Mothership III: The Station,” a P.3+ installation

Arts Estuary 1024, a multi-tenant arts facility located in the Faubourg Marigny off St. Claude Avenue, is focused on creating a space that fosters the growth and development of organizations dedicated to the creative arts and community engagement.

Arts Estuary 1024 Elysian Fields Avenue

Arts Estuary 1024 Elysian Fields Avenue


E-Newsletter / December 2014

Posted: Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014 at 12:03 pm in E-Newsletters

Cramped No Mo’!

Posted: Thursday, December 18th, 2014 at 5:37 pm in News

By Steffani Clemons, NPN/VAN Administrative Assistant

Estuary (n.) – where inland freshwater mixes and flows with tidal saltwater, producing fertile ground and supporting a diverse eco-system
Arts Estuary 1024 - new home of NPN/VAN

Arts Estuary 1024 – new home of NPN/VAN

NPN/VAN has found a new home at 1024 Elysian Fields Avenue located in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood of New Orleans. A multi-tenant facility, Arts Estuary 1024 is located at the gateway to the burgeoning St. Claude Avenue arts corridor. Even with the occasional whirling of a drill and buzzing of saws, the staff is settling down into their new offices and are thrilled to be sharing a space with three anchor tenants: KidSmart, an arts education organization; Make Music NOLA, a Local Network Partner that works with young people; and Junebug Productions, Inc., a theatre organization and long-time NPN Partner.

A permanent space has been a dream of NPN/VAN for well over ten years. The facility not only provides administrative space for the anchor tenants, it also includes multiple meeting spaces and a six-desk co-work space. There is outdoor space for events and a parking lot that is vital in an historic area known for its parking issues. Arts Estuary 1024 will help foster organic collaborations within the New Orleans cultural community helping to support a diverse arts ecosystem.

The project has come to fruition with the help of Sage Crump, project manager, who made sure that staff and tenants’ needs were met while staying aligned with NPN/VAN’s mission. The move was orchestrated by recently-hired Facility Manager Kathleen Welch, with the help of interns Monica Tyran and Rachel Swan, while the NPN/VAN staff were at the Annual Meeting in Tulsa.

Although we are working around a skeletal construction crew and are dodging a hoard of office supply cast-offs in the hallway, we haven’t missed a beat and we want our readers to know that we are finally home! Thank you so much for your continued support.

Fun Factoid: 1024 Elysian Fields was the location of the Ranson Funeral home, where John Kennedy Toole, author of The Confederacy of Dunces, was said to be laid out.

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