Brooklyn artist Tega Brain would like our government to hold on jussssssssst a second before completely eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts.
Brain created a website, neafunded.us, this week in response to rumors floating around the web that President Trump plans to cut all funding for the NEA ($148 million, or just 0.003 percent of the federal budget, in 2016). The site, elegant in its simplicity, is nothing more than the title of each grant the NEA funded just last year, scrolling, one-by-one, in different colors down the webpage.
The Hill reported last Thursday, before Trump’s inauguration, that “Staffers for the Trump transition team have been meeting with career staff at the White House ahead of Friday’s presidential inauguration to outline their plans for shrinking the federal bureaucracy,” including eliminating the NEA and the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as privatizing the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The report did not identify how it came about that information, saying only “the Hill has learned.”
— brain (@tegabrain) January 23, 2017
Brain’s site, by connecting viewers with actual raw information, makes its point strongly. The projects move fast enough down the screen that the reader is both able to read each title and also become overwhelmed at the amount of art this federal program has made possible, such as:
Two cultural history exhibitions in rural Greenbrier County in Lewisburg, West Virginia.
An arts education program for at-risk youth in Jacksonville, Florida.
Artist residencies and creative technologists for Eyebeam in Brooklyn, New York.
The Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville, Kentucky.