The J. Paul Getty Trust will create a $10 million COVID-19 relief fund to support Los Angeles-based nonprofit museums and visual arts organizations in response to the coronavirus crisis, its Board of Trustees announced Thursday.
The fund, to be administered by the California Community Foundation, will provide emergency operating support and recovery grants to small and mid-size organizations located in Los Angeles County. The efforts will focus on museums and arts nonprofits that contribute significantly to the region's artistic diversity and which are facing great difficulty during the pandemic. Getty invited other organizations and individuals to contribute to the LA Arts COVID-19 Relief Fund.
In addition, the CCF Fellowships for Visual Artists, launched more than 30 years ago through an endowment from the J. Paul Getty Trust to the California Community Foundation, will be repurposed this year to provide emergency support to visual artists.
"Over the last 20 years, Los Angeles has become one of the most vibrant, diverse and relevant visual arts centers in the world, and we want to be certain that the region is able to remain a global arts leader,'' said Getty President James Cuno.
Getty has been proud to play a role in this coming of age by leading the Pacific Standard Time regional arts collaboration. And at this juncture, we are moved by a sense of responsibility to support many of those same organizations as they struggle with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and related economic fallout," Cuno said.
Getty Board Chair David Lee said the board "offers its resounding support of this measure and encourages other local leaders and arts lovers to join us in this effort. Los Angeles is unique in the willingness of the arts sector to collaborate, and the current crisis gives those who are in a position to help the opportunity to band together and do even more for the cultural institutions and artists that drive our region's creative economy."
Grant details will be finalized in the coming days. Getty has a long-established relationship with the CCF, which has been entrusted by others to manage the distribution of more than 1,700 funds. It is expected that the CCF will be funding Los Angeles-area arts organizations with grants in amounts ranging from $25,000 to $200,000, according to the Getty.
"There will be a measurable economic and cultural ripple effect that will be felt in every city and town as arts organizations and artists struggle to lift themselves back up after the impact of COVID-19," said CCF President
Antonia Hernandez. "Los Angeles is a world-class art capital and a place where we proudly support and value our artists and arts organizations. We are proud to partner with the Getty to help our arts community shoulder the unprecedented challenges it faces."
Getty leaders have been communicating with local arts organizations since the beginning of the crisis to better understand their needs and to determine the optimal forms of support. What emerged as the highest priorities are short-term emergency funds, followed by longer-term transition planning to support recovery efforts amidst the disruptions created by the pandemic, according to the Getty.