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The Artist Foundation, a local nonprofit that makes grants directly to artists and was forged in the crucible of the city’s arts-funding process by Cultural Arts Board members Bettie Ward and Patricia Pratchett, has opened the mail slot for its second round of applications — due before midnight, September 14. Thanks to the success of February’s Art Ball, they’ve got $80,000 to disperse in $5K purses to up to 15 lucky applicants. Those winners will be notified by November 15, as will the recipient of the $7,500 Robert L.B. Tobin Grand Prize for Artistic Excellence, which will allow one lucky artist to buy all the capes and bejeweled staffs she can pull off on the streets of SA. Info is available at

Ward is busy these days, helping to birth the mayor’s day-long art extravaganza Noche Blanca in addition to running the AF, but she’s no longer serving on the CAB, which means her District 1 position, as well as the hot seats for districts 4 and 8, are open. Contact your councilperson if you’re itching to debate the merits of local arts organizations in an open-meetings-act fishbowl, or apply online through the City Clerk’s office at

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January 13, 2020

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