With the belief that artists are at the heart of Westchester’s creative community, a group of ten more artists will receive ArtsWestchester’s Artist Relief Fund grants. These grants, each in the amount of $500, are intended to help local Westchester artists who have been adversely affected by COVID-19. Like so many others, artists throughout Westchester are hurting because of the abrupt loss of work due to the pandemic. Through the Artist Relief Fund, a GoFundMe campaign that relies on donations, a total of 18 grants have now been distributed. The goal for the campaign was set at $25,000, however the grants are available on a first-come, first-serve rolling basis. The number of artists is directly dependent on funds raised.
Nationally, according to a survey by Americans for the Arts, the COVID-19 outbreak has dealt a nearly five-billion dollar blow to America’s nonprofit arts sector as of May 4. ArtsWestchester CEO Janet Langsam explains: “We are thrilled to be able to provide some support to members of the artist community who have been deeply hurt due to the abrupt loss of work during the COVID-19 crisis. Artists throughout Westchester County are feeling the pinch of canceled gallery exhibits, darkened theaters, shuttered museums and no artist residences in schools or community sites.”
The new artist grantees include painter and freelance art handler Greg Beise (White Plains), representational artist and co-founder of the Main Street Atelier Emily Denise (Tarrytown), ceramic artist and art therapist Vicki Youngman (Hastings on Hudson), saxophonist and composer Matthew Garrison (Yonkers), Paraguayan harpist Nicolas Carter (White Plains), dance instructor Marion Archer (Yonkers), folk-rock musician Marc Black (Katonah), multi-disciplinary artist Miguel Cossio (New Rochelle), self-taught ink painter Wang Mansheng (Dobbs Ferry) and soprano, composer and educator Yolanda Johnson (Tarrytown).
A version of this article first appeared in the July issue of ArtsNews, ArtsWestchester’s monthly publication. ArtsNewsis distributed throughout Westchester County. A digital copy is also available at artsw.org/artsnews.