Kirkland Arts Center Strategic Plan 2019 - 2023
CONTENTS THE POWER OF ART Our History Our Future Mission Vision Legacy Values
WHAT WE SEE TODAY Kirkland Arts Centerâ€™s Current Impact in the Community
WHAT WE IMAGINE FOR TOMORROW (OUR OPPORTUNITY) Arts Participation Trends and Latent Demand The Power of Art From Bricks and Mortar to Pencils and Clay - What Growth Looks Like at KAC
THE PATH FORWARD Strategic Plan Pillars Pillar One: Ignite artistic growth, creativity, and risk-taking Pillar Two: Build community through art experiences Pillar Three: Cultivate vibrant and unique art-engagement spaces Pillar Four: Invest in organizational capacity, guided by our values
THE POWER OF ART
Over the past fifty years, Kirkland Arts Center has been a leading voice in Kirkland for arts learning. Ten visionary leaders purchased the Peter Kirk building in 1962, growing the organization into a regional cornerstone for arts education for youth, adults, and families. Today, Kirkland Arts Center is internationally known for its ceramics program, and is distinguished for its teaching artists 3D and 2D art forms. As part of its historic mission, Kirkland Arts Center stewards the Peter Kirk building, preserving rich heritage for future generations. The art center and the Peter Kirk Building have become uniquely intertwined, as the historic site inspires art and art keeps the building alive. These two central components, art and stewardship, will continue to propel the Kirkland Arts Center forward into a new era of expanding Kirkland Arts Centerâ€™s reach, both in depth and breath, into the community.
Kirkland Arts Center believes in the power of art to bring people together, ignite individual growth, promote self-expression, and improve the quality of life for all. Kirkland Arts Centerâ€™s charge for the future is to expand access to arts experiences, to be a catalyst for deeper connections among individuals, and to foster individual growth for all. Over the next five years, Kirkland Arts Center will grow to become a thought-leader and destination art center for our community of students, working artists, mentors, and enthusiasts by offering connection, conversation, classes, events, and exhibitions.
Mission, Vision & Legacy
MISSION Kirkland Arts Center unleashes the power of art to ignite individual growth and selfexpression, build community spirit, and cultivate cultural vibrancy.
VISION Kirkland Arts Center strives to be the regional leader of engaging arts experiences for all.
LEGACY Stewardship of the Peter Kirk Building is embedded in the mission, as an unwavering commitment to Kirkland Arts Centerâ€™s legacy for future generations.
Kirkland Art Center invites openness, curiosity, and risk-taking. We encourage students of all ages and abilities to engage in arts experiences, so they can grow as individuals and be part of a community. In order to protect this existing culture and invite growth as a community, the following core values are key to our strategic mission and vision:
Inclusivity, beyond tolerance of diversity, is essential for Kirkland Arts Center to grow into the next generation. Inclusivity of all, including race, gender, sexuality, socio-economic status, age, mental and physical ability, nationality, and religion. Kirkland Arts Center embraces the growing diversity of the Eastside, and will work to be more inclusive of all that wish to be a part of Kirkland Arts Center.
Art, heritage, education, and culture are essential to a thriving society. Kirkland Arts Center values civic participation and accepts responsibility as the steward of the Peter Kirk Building, and a promoter of selfexpression, artistic growth, and cultural vibrancy for the Eastside.
Art experiences should be supportive of the personal and financial health of all who participate. Growth at Kirkland Arts Center is a balance of risk and stability when making programmatic and strategic choices. Decisions for growth should be made with an eye for ensuring operational stability and ensuring the legacy of the Peter Kirk Building is protected.
WHAT WE SEE TODAY
Kirkland Arts Center’s Current Impact in the Community
For decades, Kirkland Arts Center has been known by students and artists for its community. The depth of impact in the community is revealing through several recent measures:
• Nearly 500 students per quarter taking ceramics, printmaking, painting, or other 2D classes • 58 Teachers provide over 4,200 hours of instruction annually • Volunteers offer over 4,000 hours of support to help keep Kirkland Arts Center going • Kirkland Art Center brings 250 artists on average to market, as a service to artists and the community • Over 15 exhibits in the Peter Kirk Gallery and Kirkland Library annually
A recent survey of students, teachers, and donors highlights that 70% of students take classes at Kirkland Arts Center because they “like the atmosphere.” Individual responses about what comes to mind when students think about Kirkland Arts Center include “a creative, nurturing ambiance”, “my creative community”, and “special friends, vibrant artistic community, and generous spirit”. Three key words are expressed among all students, teaching artists, exhibiting artists, and donors:
“MORE. More classes. More resources. More outreach.” - student
“A vital home for artists art instruction in our community” - student
“A regional exhibition space for top notch artists” - teaching artist
“my desire to take some classes and for my kids to take more classes” - student
“accessible to community members of all ages” - donor
“A larger space for more classes” - student
“Capable of accommodating more programs and students” - donor
“More of a community of artists coming together than just independent classes” - teaching artist
These three words – More, Community, and Space – from the Kirkland Arts Center’s community survey along with the Center’s recent growth in enrollment and partnerships are the guiding principles in the development of this strategic plan.
WHAT WE IMAGINE FOR TOMORROW
The Power of Artâ€”Making the Case for Creativity
We know that creativity happens everywhere: classrooms, boardrooms, street corners, tech labs, and playfields. Creativity, and therefore the arts, is fundamental to the human experience. The arts help us develop nuanced empathy and compassion, deepen our experience in the world and expand our understanding of it. The practice of art is a path to intellectual development, as students learn to identify opportunities and quickly iterate to solve problems. Making art gives students the room to take creative risks as they learn to bring an idea into reality - essential skills for creatives, entrepreneurs, and professionals alike. Studies have shown that the practice of art helps us slow down and focus, which in turn increases productivity, happiness, and connection.
Research further indicates that increasingly techsavvy individuals value non-tech experiences for themselves and for their children. The process of making art, and experiencing it, is a powerful compliment to our often disconnected while technologically obsessed society. The arts are also drivers for economic growth. A global study of more than 1,500 CEOs from sixty countries and thirty-three industries, found that the CEOs believed the most important skill for successfully navigating our increasingly complex and uncertain world is none other than creativity. Studying and participating in the arts strengthens and expands oneâ€™s capacity for creativity, the top resource for competitive advantage in the 21st century.
Arts Participation Trends and Latent Demand
Kirkland Arts Center believes there is a great deal of latent demand in the community for additional arts experiences, especially on the Eastside where there are fewer instructional fine arts organizations available. Research from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) reported in 2014 that in the state of Washington, 52% of adults personally perform or create art. Interestingly, at the national level, although 56% of adults report engaging in learning of any arts subject through any learning method, only 7% of adults reported taking a class, in school or out of school. Additionally, 2012 survey of public participation (SPPA) reports that whites, women, younger adults, and those with higher levels of education are the most likely to have taken arts classes or lessons, whether in childhood or at any point in their lives. Interest in Ceramics is on the rise nationally, both as a relaxation tool and as a serious artform. Kirkland Art Centerâ€™s ceramics classes have waitlists, and the time is now to support the demand to increase Kirkland Arts Centerâ€™s capacity to support demand.
From Bricks and Mortar to Pencils and Clay— What Growth Looks Like at Kirkland Arts Center
Kirkland Arts Center’s holistic approach to growth will align exhibitions, education, and collaborative arts facilities. Spaces at the Peter Kirk Building and beyond must be designed to maximize the opportunity for community engagement and individual creativity. Possible facilities include:
• A second ceramics classroom • An expanded handbuilding and glazing space • A full-featured printmaking studio • Lecture and meeting facilities • A one-of-kind gallery and performance space • More kilns some dedicated for artist use (non-classroom) • Open studio spaces • Rental or artist in residence spaces
A renovated Peter Kirk Building and new facilities will allow Kirkland Arts Center to meet current demand and allow for growth for a new kind of arts center. A dynamic mix of open studios, rental opportunities, exhibitions, entrepreneurship classes and artists in residents allow artists at all levels to collaborate, interact with the broader community, and help others to imagine what is possible through art. New educational initiatives, resources and physical space will require support beyond Kirkland Art Center’s current operating budget. Growth in the strategic plan is accelerated, steadily doubling the operational budget, creating the opportunity for legacy-building opportunities for Kirkland.
THE PATH FORWARD
Strategic Plan Pillars
Kirkland Art Centerâ€™s strategic plan pillars strengthen and reinforce one another while supporting a new armature of thought-leadership programs, classes, and events for the Eastside community and beyond.
IGNITE artistic growth, creativity, and risk-taking
CULTIVATE community through art experiences
BUILD vibrant and unique art-engagement spaces
INVEST in organizational capacity, guided by our values
artistic growth, creativity, and risk-taking
Further grow the gallery and public exhibitions to curate relevant and provocative work Year One (2019)—Art & Healing ›› Call for Artists: Art & Healing ›› Emerging Curator Initiative: Gun Culture: Emotion and Reason ›› Community Exhibition Partners
Year Two (2020)—Heritage & Hindsight (20/20) ›› Peter Kirk Building Retrospective ›› Call for Artists: Heritage & Hindsight in Eastern Washington ›› Exhibit curated by regional Native Artist
Year Three (2021)—Art & Youth ›› Multiple Community Partner Exhibitions: −− Youth in Focus −− Boys and Girls Club −− Kirkland Teen Center −− Youth Eastside Services ›› Call for Artists: 30 under 30 ›› Make Your Mark: Three-Year Celebration
Develop visiting artist series for week-long summer intensives Build artist entrepreneurship program ›› Create entrepreneurship workshop series ›› Pilot rental program ›› Develop mentorship opportunities for emerging artists
CULTIVATE community through art experiences
Develop and Expand KAC’s Afterschool Program : Make Your Mark (MYM) Year One (2019) ›› Serve up to 240 youth ›› Build professional development summer program Year Two (2020) ›› Double program to 480 youth Year Three (2021) ›› Maintain size of 500 youth served directly, 200 served through independent programs ›› MYM Exhibition at Kirkland Arts Center Summer 2021
Partner with Civic and Municipal Organizations ›› Maintain outdoor sculpture installation on Park Lane in partnership with City of Kirkland ›› Provide adult and youth art classes at multiple City of Bellevue Community Center Locations ›› Curate new exhibitions of local artists with King County Library System ›› Implement art activities and exhibitions for Summerfest and the Kirkland Cultural Arts Commission
Advance Corporate Partnerships ›› Offer art-based team-building events at KAC ›› Provide corporate campus art classes
vibrant and unique art-engagement spaces
Create a Business and Concept Plan for KAC facilities ›› Engage cultural arts planner to conduct study (2019)
Advance the Adaptive Reuse of the Peter Kirk Building Year One (2019) ›› Finish phase three of seismic retrofit project ›› Pilot rental and other entrepreneurial programs for ceramics and printmaking Year Two (2020)—Plan for the expansion of our physical plant ›› Develop comprehensive blueprint for space expansion of ceramics and printmaking ›› Move classes as necessary to partner satellite sites Year Three (2021) ›› Remodel the Peter Kirk Building
Explore options for additional building space near Kirkland Arts Center ›› Possibilities include acquiring adjacent buildings, purchasing land or developing satellite locations.
in organizational capacity, guided by our values
Build board capacity, in both depth and breadth Identify strengths and weaknesses through board assessment Year One (2019) ›› Grow board to fifteen community leaders Year Two (2020) ›› Grow board to a twenty member board
Create and Hire the following roles: ›› Marketing and PR Director ›› Finance and HR Director ›› Community Partnerships and Volunteers Manager ›› Gallery and Events Manager
Support staff professional development Support Teaching Artist development as educators and artists Prioritize an inclusion and equity lens to guide staff and board decisions Roll out a digital strategy that aims to: ›› Empower the KAC Team and Board to work more efficiently, share information, collaborate, and better understand the organization ›› Connect all community members as a network to create opportunities for collaboration, partnership and introductions that are uniquely possible in a virtual space.
Kirkland Arts Center believes in the power of art to bring people together, ignite individual growth, promote self-expression, and improve the quality of life for all. Kirkland Art Center’s charge for the future is to expand access to arts experiences, to be a catalyst for deeper connections among individuals, and to foster individual growth for all. Our sense of community is both a defining character and compelling draw to the Kirkland Arts Center. Our physical space is a key constraint to growth. The core strategic decision in the plan is to invest in providing more classes, opportunities for connection, access, and entrepreneurship, and free exhibitions through improvement of the current facility while growing programs with partners across the region.
This plan outlines the beginning, not the end of Kirkland Art Center’s vision to become a thoughtleader and regional destination art center. The Center’s community of students, working artists, mentors, and enthusiasts will strive to encourage creative development through connection, conversation, classes, events, and exhibitions. As new opportunities arise and growth accelerates and evolves, the Kirkland Arts Center leadership and board will interpret the strategic plan as a living document, subject to revision, but always providing guidance and structure toward achieving the vision as the regional leader of engaging arts experiences for all.
Kelly Dylla • Executive Director
Strategic Planning Task Force Marcelo Prieto • Board Member Ashwin Gonibeed • Board Member Vickie Sanders • Board Member
John Adams • Board President Rachel Wright • Board Member Design Patrick Holderfield / Holdereaux Studio
Members of the Kirkland Cultural Arts Commission Kirkland Arts Center - Advisory Committee - Staff
- Teaching Artists - Students
SPECIAL THANKS TO: Merrily Dicks, Donna Shill, Donna Porter, William Radcliffe, Suzy Mings, Carol Gouthro, Pat Colyar, Carol Belval, Dana Nunnelly, Dawn Laurant, Bill Ballentine, Coralyn Whitney, Judy Harris, Susan Pappalardo, Joan and Craig Wrench, Taylor and MaryLu Hawes
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