About Us

Created to Strengthen North Carolina’s Creativity, Invention and Prosperity

Our Structure
The N.C. Arts Council is governed by a 24-member board appointed by the Governor, a 24-member staff, and serves as the steward of state and federal funds appropriated for the arts. Arts Council Board meetings are open to the public.

Our Mission
To promote the arts to benefit North Carolina citizens and communities.

Our State of the Arts
North Carolina has long been recognized for rich traditions in crafts, literature, visual arts and music. The North Carolina Arts Council has built an infrastructure for the arts that reaches into all 100 counties and serves as a national model. We believe the arts are an essential ingredient in state policy, practice and pride, and artists are an integral part of civic life, stimulating creativity, innovation and dialogue. The arts build bridges among diverse communities and help children flourish in school. Our arts industry is robust and fuels the state’s creative economy. North Carolina metropolitan areas pulsate with artistic energy, while our rural communities reach deep into their roots to celebrate their unique traditions and explore new ones.

How We Work

Our Funding

The N.C. Arts Council receives an annual appropriation from the state of North Carolina Legislature and from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as private funds raised from foundations and individual supporters of the Arts Council and its programs.

1. To Create a Strong and Efficient Arts Infrastructure we:

  • Work with local arts organizations to create and sustain innovative arts programs that contribute to quality of life and to community vitality.
  • Improve accessibility to arts and to artists with tools that bring together artists, arts organizations and arts presenters to improve the quality and access to arts resources.
  • Manage a grants program that distributes state and federal funds to local arts councils and community arts organizations in all 100 counties in the state.

2. Economic Development:

3. Education

  • The A+ Schools Program, nationally recognized for its success in student achievement, is the longest running and most successful arts-based school reform program in the country.
    • A+ Schools use the arts as a catalyst for creating connections and making schools engaging, meaningful and enjoyable places to teach and learn.
    • Almost a half million public school students in North Carolina have learned math, science, geography and language with direct classroom experiences in the arts since the program was founded in 1995. This whole school reform model views the arts as fundamental to how teachers teach and students learn in all subjects.
  • Provide youth with arts experiences, as observers through cARTwheels, in the classroom through artist residencies, and practitioners through TAPS (Traditional Arts Program) and JAM (Junior Appalachian Music.).

4. Research

  • Conduct and distribute research that documents the impact of the state’s arts industry on North Carolina’s economy.
    • Creative industries in North Carolina (Publishing & Printing, Entertainment & Information, Artists, Design Manufacturing, for example) account for more than six percent of North Carolina’s workforce at 336,000 full time, part time and entrepreneurial jobs.
    • Creative industry jobs generate more than $14 billion in wages, salaries and benefits and generate $22.7 billion in revenues
    • Nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences generate $119 million in local and state revenue.