Philanthropic Youth Tampa Bay raises money for art museum listen02/18/11 Lachelle Roddy
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With today’s economy, arts are often the first target of funding cuts. But young people have formed a new organization to raise money for the arts.
The Philanthropic Youth Tampa Bay gathered last night at the Tampa Museum of Art. They have helped to raise funds to purchase a film from New York artist Janet Briggs, to donate to the museum. The film, which depicts scenes of the melting Arctic, was introduced by Todd Smith, the executive director of the Tampa Museum of Art.
“Each of them deals with the vanishing myth of the Arctic north. So the fact that you see the ship that she’s on and this guy that she’s with has made their way to the Arctic on this ship really helps you understand that what we see in the end result and a lot of the paintings and photographs from the Arctic are real constructions, that they didn’t really exist but rather that they were made up by the artists and by the photographer to convey a point about this land is being open for exploration and open for exploitation. So there’s an environmental message; there’s a power message’ there’s a gender message and there’s also a racial message as well.”
Ed Rosichy, a local musician, explains his thoughts after seeing the film.
“I was invited by a friend to come over here, and I love to just hear about things that may be a little out of my scope, not that this exactly is but it was nice to come over and I actually didn’t have much of a- I didn’t know exactly what was going on so it was a nice, really nice surprise to see this film- was amazing. I’m a working musician artist so I don’t have a lot of money to give but to support and just to be able to be exposed to this kind of beautiful art is amazing. That film was great wasn’t it?”
Smith gave guests a tour of the museum’s top floor gallery, where an expansion is planned.
“One of the areas that we are growing into as a museum is that of video art. It’s been around for about fifty years, but really we’re the only public institution in the area that is accepting it as a very important art form to be pushed as part of what we do for the broader community so video is a large component of what we will be going forward, as these other parts of new media, so you see the front of our building if you haven’t experienced it yet, the fourteen thousand square feet of LED lights I think makes a very strong statement as to where we’re going.”
The artistic director of The Salon 1.0, Sonny D, said it’s important for youth to get involved in philanthropy.
“So every about eight weeks we have a group of girls that come, different girls from the children's home and we bring them in for a day of beauty on us, not only just to give them a really great hair cuts and color but we do make up, but also lift their spirits. We talk to them about the career path that some of the girls are on in the salon. Also, so they can see some of the people that may not be much older than them, giving back to them. So it’s a big part of our culture. The reward is ten fold.”
One of their co-creators Ann-Eliza Musoke Taylor, says Philanthropic Youth Tampa Bay gives young people a chance to give back to the arts, rather than the typical, older generation.
“I find that people in their mid twenties to late thirties want to be involved in the arts. They want to see their community grow but they don’t have the dollar power that their older, more established co workers may have, and so we took kind of a micro lending approach to philanthropic giving, which is instead of asking two or three people to give large amounts we can ask a hundred people to give small amounts, and get the same results.”
T. Hampton Dohrman, another co-creator, said it’s important for youth to get involved in arts.
“There’s a ton of young money and a ton of young interest in things like this that I don’t think there’s really a good vehicle for engaging that. That’s part of the reason for creating the program is to provide an opportunity for people to get involved, develop personal attachments to where their money is going. Another important thing is developing personal relationships with cultural organizations and young professionals so that when you’re donating to the Tampa Museum of Art, you’re donating to Todd Smith who you know, or you’re donating to the actors at Jobsite Theatre or you have a personal relationship with where your donations are going.”
The Philanthropic Youth Tampa Bay will hold events on the second Thursday of every month.