WASHINGTON, DC—Today, Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) announced that SPACE Gallery, a nonprofit organization that supports contemporary artists in Maine, will receive $250,000 in pandemic relief from the American Rescue Plan. The Portland arts organization is among 66 grantees across the country to be awarded a total of $20.2 million in funding through the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). This emergency funding will be distributed to artists and organizations in the community to help the cultural sector recover from the devastating impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
“As the co-chair of the Congressional Arts Caucus, I’ve seen how the arts can bring people together and build understanding, and the pandemic has shown our communities just how important those connections are. In Maine, the arts are a $1.5 billion industry and support thousands of jobs—but despite previous assistance from the CARES Act, our cultural institutions and arts community continue to face profound hardships as they work to recover,” said Congresswoman Chellie Pingree. “Arts organizations put the health of their communities first throughout the pandemic by shuttering their doors, suffering crushing financial hardship as a result. Since the beginning of the pandemic, SPACE has been a crucial support to the arts community in Maine; they stepped up to raise and distribute hundreds of thousands of dollars in emergency relief grants to artists throughout the state. I’m so glad their effective work is recognized and supplemented by this much-needed funding.”
“Thanks to the historic American Rescue Plan that I was proud to help pass in March, artists across the country and in Maine are getting the crucial assistance they need. With it, they will have the tools necessary to continue enriching the lives of our communities and supporting Maine’s economy.”
The American Rescue Plan dedicated $135 million for arts agencies to distribute in their communities to eligible recipients to save jobs and to fund operations and facilities, health and safety supplies, and marketing and promotional efforts to encourage attendance and participation. In the first round of funding in April, NEA distributed 40 percent of its allocated funds to 62 state, jurisdictional, and regional arts organizations for regranting through their respective programs. The third installment of ARP funding to arts organizations to support their own operations will be announced in early 2022.
Pingree serves as the Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, where she oversees the NEA and arts funding.