mural on side of building showing hand with gears and chains connected to fingers
Photo Credit: Baltimore Heritage on Flickr. Open Walls Baltimore mural.

With Baltimore’s Arts and Culture Week underway, Mayor Brandon Scott on Tuesday issued an executive order establishing the Mayor’s Arts and Culture Advisory Committee to support the local arts community.

The committee will have 23 members and will “serve in an advisory capacity, providing guidance, recommendations, and support to the Mayor, City Council, and Senior Advisor of Arts and Culture in Baltimore City on matters involving and pertaining to arts and culture,” according to Scott’s office.

The committee will aim to cultivate and support Baltimore’s artistic and cultural history, and help “nurture an economy that prioritizes and retains artists and preserves culture.”

“The Arts and Culture Advisory Committee will champion the importance of arts and culture in our city, advocating for increased support, funding, and resources for the creative community,” Scott said. “I’m thrilled we have a group of dedicated and passionate art professionals and enthusiasts who will be instrumental in supporting our local artists and organizations, and the coordination of cultural events that showcase our city’s talent and heritage.”

The mayor will appoint 20 of the 23 members to the committee, and the city council president and city comptroller will appoint the remaining three members. According to the executive order, members’ term lasts as long as the mayor’s. The positions are uncompensated financially, though expenses are reimbursed.

Among the directives of the order, the committee will be tasked with building a “thriving creative economy” in Baltimore and supporting local artists, entrepreneurs and creative professionals; prioritizing arts outreach and education; ensuring arts opportunities are inclusive and accessible; conserving and promoting Baltimore arts, historical landmarks, and cultural traditions; providing oversight of the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts; and more.

There are already 18 confirmed members of the Mayor’s Arts and Culture Advisory Committee. They include:

  • Derrick Adams, Contemporary Artist and the Last Resort Artist Retreat
  • Sean Brescia, Mission Media
  • Nicholas Cohen, Maryland Citizens for the Arts
  • Terri Freeman, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture
  • Amy Burke Friedman, PROFILES
  • Stacy Handler, Bloom Arts Strategy
  • Jeannie Howe, Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance
  • Eze Jackson, Artist
  • Mary Ann Mears, Sculptor and Public Art Advocate
  • Robyn Murphy, JRM Consultancy
  • Cara Ober, BmoreArt
  • Wendel Patrick, Johns Hopkins Peabody Institute
  • Ernest Shaw Jr., Contemporary Artist
  • Jessica Solomon, Art in Praxis
  • Eric Souza, Midtown Community Benefits District
  • DJ Tanz, DJ, Event Producer, and Baltimore Influencer
  • Thea Washington, Thea Washington Casting
  • Jenenne Whitfield, American Visionary Art Museum and The Heidelberg Project

“Baltimore is entrenched with talent,” said committee member Derrick Adams in a statement. “However, nearly 30 years ago, I left Baltimore to pursue a career in the arts. While my path in pursuit of my passion was destined and I am ever-grateful for my journey over the past three decades, it is important to me that we create spaces in Baltimore that nurture and retain the City’s talent.”

Scott’s administration emphasized its commitment to prioritizing and promoting the arts and culture in Baltimore “through economic development, policy recommendations, community engagement, and education and outreach, as well as cultural heritage preservation and public art initiatives.”

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