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San Francisco Arts Commission Neighborhood Arts Program Records
SFH 453  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Provenance
  • Related Materials
  • Administrative History
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement

  • Title: San Francisco Arts Commission Neighborhood Arts Program Records
    Date (inclusive): 1970-2003
    Date (bulk): 1970-1990
    Identifier/Call Number: SFH 453
    Creator: San Francisco (Calif.). Art Commission
    Physical Description: Three cartons and one pamphlet box. (3.25 Cubic Feet)
    Contributing Institution: San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library
    100 Larkin Street
    San Francisco, CA 94102
    (415) 557-4567
    info@sfpl.org
    Abstract: The San Francisco Neighborhood Arts Program (NAP) was established and funded by the Arts Commission in July 1967. The NAP shifted the focus of the arts community to neighborhood community centers that reflected the cultural identities of the communities who lived there. It was the first community program of its kind employing hundreds of local artists working in a variety of artistic disciplines, offering workshops, performances and other arts services in cultural centers and community settings.
    Physical Location: The collection is stored onsite.
    Language of Materials: Collection materials are in English with some Chinese.

    Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is available for use during San Francisco History Center hours.

    Publication Rights

    All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the City Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the San Francisco Public Library as the owner of the physical items.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], San Francisco Arts Commission Neighborhood Arts Program Records (SFH 453), San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library.

    Provenance

    Donated by Anne Trickey in 2016 for the San Francisco Art Commission.

    Related Materials

    Researches are encouraged to view SFP 30, San Francisco Arts Festival Photographs and Records, 1948-1985 (bulk 1967-1985) and to search the SFPL catalog.

    Administrative History

    The San Francisco Neighborhood Arts Program (NAP) was established and funded by the Arts Commission in July 1967 with substantial support from Commission president Harold Zellerbach. The NAP shifted the focus of the arts community to neighborhood community centers that reflected the cultural identities of the communities who lived there. It was the first community program of its kind and its influence quickly inspired many cities throughout the country to follow the same model.
    The program employed hundreds of local artists working in a variety of artistic disciplines, offering workshops, performances and other arts services in cultural centers and community settings. Popular performers like the Pickle Family Circus, the San Francisco Mime Troupe, and Intersection for the Arts were cultivated in the Neighborhood Arts Program which also attracted talented artists like Bill Irwin, Marga Gomez, Roberto Vargas, Danny Glover and Peter Coyote.
    In 1973 the city announced plans to spend five million dollars in federal revenue-sharing to develop a Performing Arts Center, today's Davies Symphony Hall. Community members were outraged that their funding was being allocated for an arts center designed for only a wealthy few. The activist group Community Coalition For the Arts won a commitment from the city to spend two and a half million dollars in revenue-sharing over five years to purchase and develop community cultural centers.
    In 1974 NAP and the San Francisco Arts Commission acquired federal funding through the Comprehensive Education and Training Act (CETA) and were able to hire 123 CETA artist positions.
    By 1977 SF Arts Commission had acquired four buildings and converted them to neighborhood arts centers: Bayview Opera House, Mission Cultural Center, Western Addition Cultural Center, and the South of Market Cultural Center (now SOMArts). They also leased facilities in Chinatown, North Beach and Bernal Heights.
    When Davies Symphony Hall opened in 1980 tensions flared. Artists and community members were angry that neighborhood art programs were being defunded while so much money was being spent on the new symphony building. On November 25, 1980 a fire destroyed the commission’s headquarters at 165 Grove Street damaging prints, drawings and paintings and destroying many offices and records. The building was eventually razed and the commission was relocated to new offices.
    The effects of proposition 13 lowering property taxes undercut funding for schools and the arts, and in 1981 the federal government stopped funding the CETA arts program and the NAP lost seventy-five percent of its staff.
    Sometime between September and November of 1991 the Neighborhood Arts Program changed its name to Community Arts and Education to reflect its broader focus and it continues to support the arts in San Francisco.

    Scope and Content

    The collection contains files relating to the Neighborhood Arts Program and the Chinese Cultural Center. Materials include correspondence, files on community centers, flyers, booklets, events planning, materials relating to NAP, clippings, directories, photographs and photographic slides.

    Arrangement

    Collection is arranged in 3 series: Series 1: Neigborhood Arts Program Records, Series 2: Cultural Centers, Series 3: Photos. Series 2 has one subseries. Subseries 2.1: Chinatown Neighborhood Arts Program.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Neighborhood Arts Program (San Francisco, Calif.)
    Community centers.
    San Francisco (Calif.). Art Commission
    San Francisco Arts Commission