Partnering with community foundations to strengthen arts and creativity across Massachusetts.

Cities and towns across Massachusetts are full of creative talent and cultural assets that have the power to inspire us, challenge us, and bring us together. Yet, depending on geography, art form, or networks, access to funding can be uneven—as can opportunities to experience arts and creativity.

In response to this challenge, the Creative Commonwealth Initiative is an investment in the unique potential of community foundations to build local networks for arts and culture, and to help the creative sector become more sustainable, equitable, and accessible statewide.

The initiative has three overarching goals:

  • To strengthen arts and creativity in communities by deepening financial support and improving local arts policy.
  • To form a learning community that shares successes and challenges, and enhances the capacity of each participating foundation.
  • To offer a model of constructive partnership between private and community foundations and civic entities.

Community foundations have knowledge, relationships, and credibility to help infuse arts and creativity in civic life. They can convene organizations across sectors, bring new information and insights to decision-makers, raise public awareness of key issues and opportunities, and spur collaboration among those who make arts and creativity possible in their communities.

Each Creative Commonwealth partner embraces diversity and is growing its capacity for inclusive and equitable practices. These attributes are especially vital in the geographies these partners serve—places that are experiencing significant demographic change.

Arts and creativity can be a means to social cohesion, reflection, and new understanding that helps bridge divides. Creative Commonwealth partners are helping activate the assets in their regions to realize these benefits, and to ensure all can find their voice and place in our communities. This means new kinds of art, cultural explorations, voices, perspectives, and genres that take new forms, and appear in unexpected places.

Creative Commonwealth Geography

A map of Massachusetts, detailing the five regions where Creative Commonwealth will impact.

News about Creative Commonwealth