Dear ‘Friends’ of Materials for the Arts,
While I may not be familiar to you, Materials for the Arts certainly is.
My name is Andrew Seiken, and I have the honor of serving as the new Board Chair of Friends of Materials for the Arts, MFTA’s nonprofit partner. I first joined the board at the urging of a colleague, and once I understood MFTA’s mission and the scope of its impact on the communities it serves, I knew immediately, this was a special place. I want to take a moment to share a bit about our work.
As a committed supporter, we count on you to help us fund the innovative programs and services we offer that are outside the purview of the City of New York’s financial support. While the City does cover the majority of our operating expenses, it is vital contributions like yours that directly fund the MFTA Education Center, Artist-in-Residence program, and Gallery.
Here are some of the impactful initiatives we have created over the past 18 years with private funding:
- Our year-round community workshops feature art presentations and hands-on activities for members of the public at free community events.
- Our studio-style Professional Development courses, “P-Credits,” provide educators with the insight and tools to integrate the arts across the curriculum.
- Through our Field Trip Program, students have the opportunity to visit NYC’s premier reuse facility and tour the MFTA Gallery, the Artist-in-Residence studio, and then create an art project in our classrooms. Every year we offer over 100 free field trips to underserved and undersupported public schools.
- Our Gallery and Artist-in-Residence program nurture the creative practices of emerging, evolving, and established artists who utilize reusable items in their artmaking. Our program identifies and supports extraordinary artists who push the boundaries and aesthetics of contemporary art.
- In our in-school residencies, MFTA teaching artists encourage the reuse and repurposing of materials and show school staff how simple changes can result in more materials to support classroom programming.
- Our active Volunteer Program, with thousands of volunteers every year, ranging from corporate groups and retirees to college students and nonprofit community organizations, provides a space for giving back to the community and helps us to keep our 35,000 square foot warehouse organized.
On this #GivingTuesday, join us in continuing to enhance the mission of Materials for the Arts. Your contribution will go directly towards strengthening our many educational programs and providing more opportunities to our member organizations. Our mission is simple but urgent: continue to advance the message of sustainability in the classroom, studio, set, or stage and to spread the importance of Creative Reuse.
Your gift matters.
Friends of Materials for the Arts