Impact of the Vision 2025 plan on Tulsa's art community

Monday, August 25th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

The Vision 2025 plan and its potential impact on Tulsa’s art community. News on Six reporter Emory Bryan says there's money in the Vision plan to build some infrastructure for the arts, but that's not what some expect to be the main benefit.

When the economy tanked, money that supported the arts dried up. If the Vision plan could turn some of that around - the arts could once again flourish. It's not that Tulsa doesn't get big arts events - we do. The Remington exhibit at Gilcrease will only visit Washington, Denver and Tulsa.

But Tulsa's arts community is suffering from a lack of financial support - and in some cases, a lack of interest. Arts council director Ken Busby says the momentum of Tulsa's art community seems to be slowing. "While funding is down, and we're all feeling it in the non profit sector, we've really tried to make it the best we can and make more with less."

The Vision plan doesn't directly support arts programs - but the arts community believes it stands to benefit. John Scott, Performing Arts Center: "What benefits the Tulsa Community benefits the arts groups in Tulsa, they've always relied on donations form the community and when the community is strong and the economy is strong, the arts groups are strong as well."

The Vision plan has money for arts related infrastructure, like the Jazz Hall of Fame - the Aquarium - Route 66 and the Indian Cultural Center. Tulsa's mayor believes the Vision plan will improve the economy - and that the arts will benefit. Mayor Bill LaFortune, “we believe Vision 2025 will grow the economy and increase jobs in such a way that the arts can be supported the way they traditionally have, through private support.”

We'll have continuing coverage of the Vision plan here on the News on 6 and a special News on 6 forum on the Vision plan, Sunday night September 7th.