UW News

October 28, 1999

University of Washington begins Campaign for Arts with $2.5 million gifts

News and Information

The University of Washington today announced a $12 million Campaign for the Arts and reported gifts of $2.5 million to begin that campaign.

“This is an important moment in the history of the arts at the university and in the Northwest,” said UW President Richard L. McCormick. “These gifts mark the launching of our drive to establish an arts endowment. This endowment will have profound effects on the quality of artists on our faculty, on the resources available to our students and on the community at large. This endowment will greatly enhance the UW presence in the arts. Our overall goal is nothing less than a campus renaissance in the arts for the 21st century.”

The university has received a $1 million pledge from the Kreielsheimer Foundation in support of the campaign. An additional $250,000 has come from Ruth Waters to create a professorship in the School of Music. The gifts will be matched with $1,250,000 that will be redirected from the Donald E. Petersen Endowment for Excellence, with the funds to be used for professorships and faculty fellowships in the arts.

The goals of the Campaign for the Arts include: creating an integrated focus for the arts, by supporting innovative curricula that span artistic disciplines; improving the overall quality of the UW’s arts programs, drawing the best visiting artists, faculty and students to Seattle; and increasing connections to the community, especially through the Summer Arts Festival, which will be inaugurated this summer.

The theme for the first festival, to be held July 18-22, is “Quartets.” It will involve members of the UW arts community (both faculty and students) in dance, drama, music and the visual arts, as well as preeminent national artists. Organizers are expecting between 5,000 and 10,000 people to attend at least one of the festival events. In addition to public performances and exhibits, there will be lectures, discussions, and courses for both community members and students that will be integrated into the festival, providing an in-depth look at the artists and their work. A variety of educational opportunities will be available to elementary and high school students and their teachers. The festival will be unique in Seattle in its commitment to collaboration and education: every performance will have an educational component, designed to attract maximum participation from diverse segments of the community.

The campaign also will support:

–enhanced exhibits and performances at the Henry Art Gallery and Meany Hall, respectively, attracting the best and most innovative exhibits and performers to campus;

–enhanced artists in residence programs, which will benefit students, faculty and the greater community;

–creation of an arts technology program;

–additional financial support for outstanding arts students;

–expanded outreach from UW programs to the K-12 school systems in the region.

An endowment of $12 million would provide $600,000 annually in support of UW arts programs for the campus and the community.

For additional information, contact Michael Halleran, divisional dean for arts and humanities, College of Arts and Sciences, 206-543-5340.