Milwaukee Artist Resource Network
Press Release

Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN) Recipient of $3,000,000 Grant

Local non-profit to open new facility; Ensures 10 years of operational funding; MARN to expand programing for emerging artists.

By - Jul 19th, 2019 01:11 pm

(Milwaukee, Wisconsin) The Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN) has been informed that it is the recipient of a $3,000,000 grant from the Anonymous Fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. With 10 years of operational funding now ensured, the grant will enable the organization to expand its operational capacity and create a new facility that will include a gallery, event space, and a retail storefront.

“I firmly believe this remarkable grant is a game changer for the entire creative economy here in Southeast Wisconsin.” said Mal Montoya, who will now serve as President and CEO for the organization. “The significance of this anonymous $3 million donation goes well beyond the advancement of our core operations. Bringing this level of funding to a community-based arts organization sends a clear message: ‘there is an arts and culture renaissance currently underway here in Milwaukee’. It’s certainly my hope that the generosity of this benefactor motivates those within the philanthropic community to step up and support other neighborhood arts organizations.”

Currently located in a small office on the sixth floor of the Marshall building, in the Historic Third Ward, MARN will now turn its focus to building a center for collaboration, innovation, and creativity, in a more coveted location. “For example, it hasn’t been feasible to consider a ground floor retail presence for local emerging artists here in the Third Ward. Perhaps MARN can change that. This grant will allow us to place more emphasis on resources needed to bring local artists into the creative economy.” Montoya concluded.

The organization is currently looking at several potential locations to accommodate a center that will include a modern art gallery, event space, and a retail store front. “This is exactly what I’ve always imagined MARN could be”, said Pamela Anderson, MARN Board Chair. “This gives us the ability to expand programming and services to our diverse range of artists and, more importantly, increase opportunities and exposure for our members,” she further added.

As with other organizations supporting the development of our creative economy, such as Imagine MKE, there is a growing sense that artists will need a voice in front of the Democratic National Convention held here next July. MARN plans to use this national exposure as a springboard for our local artists. “In the spirit of this remarkable gift, I will be exploring every opportunity to maximum opportunities for our creative communities. Not just as a ramp up to the convention, but for the years to come. Stay tuned…” Montoya concluded.

MARN – Milwaukee Artist Resource Network

Founded in 2000, the Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN), a 501(c)3, provides those within our creative economy the resources needed to cultivate a sustainable art practice.

MARN empowers literary, performing, and visual artists with access to educational and professional resources and creates a network for communication and collaboration. MARN’s membership programming efforts focus on adult education linked with career-building opportunities, business development, and public engagement.

For nearly twenty years, MARN has been dedicated to strengthening our local communities by improving the lives of artists and increasing the public’s understanding of the value of art. With the support of public and private funding, MARN brings critical dialogue, engaging programming, and resources to professional and emerging artists, art appreciators, and supporters.

MARN Leadership
Mal Montoya -President & CEO, MARN
Pamela M Anderson -Board Chair, Interdisciplinary Artist, Director of Material Studios & Gallery
Robert Zondag -Board Vice Chair, Artist, CSO/Managing Partner of The American Deposit Management Co.
Margaret M. Wittig, JD -Board Secretary, Advocacy MKE Sole Proprietor
Ron Bote, CPA, MST -Board Treasurer, Manager Wipfli
Lynne Dixon-Speller -Board Member, Dean of Academics, Apparel Design Chair, Edessa School of Fashion
Nina Ghanbarzadeh – Board Member, MARN Salon Program Coordinator
Erick “CK” Ledesma -Board Member, Manager of Community Engagement at Milwaukee Repertory Theater/ Co-Founder-Artistic Director of Cosecha Creative Space
Bethany McCurdy -Board Member, Senior Counsel, Michael Best
Sara Daleiden -Board Member, Director, MKE<->LAX
Michael J. Havice Ed.D. -Board Member, Retired, Associate Professor, Broadcast & Electronic Communication, Marquette University College of Communication
Michele St. Amour -Operations Director, MARN

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