Congressman Cicilline calls for Art by High School Students for the US Capitol

Each spring, a nation-wide high school arts competition is sponsored by the Members of the U.S. House of Representatives. The Artistic Discovery Contest is an opportunity to recognize and encourage the artistic talent in the nation, as well as in our congressional district.

The Congressional Art Competition is open to all high school students in the 1st District. The overall winner of our district’s competition will be displayed for one year in the United States Capitol. The exhibit in Washington will also include artwork from other contest winners nationwide. The deadline is April 27, 2018.

For more information, click here.

Apply For The Tinney Family Arts Scholarship

The Arts and Cultural Alliance of Newport County is offering the Tinney Family Arts Scholarship of $2,000 in memory of the Tinney Family. The Tinney family is best known for building a Gold Coronation Coach that was designed by Donald Tinney in 1966. He also restored Belcourt Castle in Newport, created and restored stained glass windows, and also inspired students to learn many of the “lost arts”.


Donald Tinney can best be described as a “Renaissance” man. He studied music played the piano, the organ, and sang in a boy’s choir.  Through hard work, artistic talent, and dedication he transformed a family historic farm into a stunning estate with beautiful landscaping and stone paths.   With members of his family Donald learned woodworking, upholstering, oil painting, refinishing antiques, and other artistic skills.  Even though the Tinneys were not born with monetary wealth; they were rich with love, talent, and ambition.


This scholarship is to be awarded to a graduating High School Senior who has demonstrated artistic talent and the ambition to strive for excellence. All areas of the Arts will be accepted and considered.  It is the desire in giving this scholarship that the Tinney family’s protégé will cherish and perpetuate the Tinney legacy while making  the most of his/her own  inherent artistic abilities.


CLICK HERE for an outline of the Eligibility and Application Requirements.  If you have any  questions, please send an e-mail to  with “Tinney Scholarship” in the subject line.


Artistically yours,


The Tinney Family Arts Scholarship Committee


collaborative The Collaborative, an all-volunteer nonprofit arts organization, will be holding free art classes for middle and high school students during the month of March.  The classes will be held at the Mary V. Quirk School, 790 Main St., Warren in coordination with the Warren Parks & Recreation Department and funded by grants from Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and the TACO White Family Foundation.

The classes will be presented in two sections and students can pick one class from each section. Section One runs on consecutive Sundays: March 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th, from 1pm-4pm and offers a class in functional sculpture and one in nontraditional & experimental techniques.  Section Two will take place on Friday March 23rd from 3pm-6pm and then on Saturday and Sunday, the 24th – 25th, from 9am-1pm. These classes will be in printmaking and filmmaking.  Four talented Rhode Island Arts Educators will teach the classes including Juliette Casselman, Lauren Enjeti, Adam Tracy and Tommy Whalen.

Since its inception, The Collaborative has always envisioned being less a gallery and more of an educational organization, bringing together art and education for people of all ages.  That’s why Executive Director of The Collaborative, Uriah Donnelly, is very excited about this particular event. “This program really follows our philosophy of using the arts to educate,” said Donnelly.

The two main goals of this program are to develop each student’s appreciation of the arts and to encourage self-esteem and confidence.  Since The Collaborative started, we have had many young artists exhibit in our gallery. We’ve had the pleasure of watching them grow and evolve into budding professionals.

At the conclusion of the classes, there will be showcases of the students’ work throughout the month of April at The Collaborative space, 498 Main Street Warren, RI.

These classes are free but are capped at ten and students must register through The Collaborative website: For more information email:

Sherry Brown and Retirement…

sherrySherry Brown and Retirement are two words I never expected to put together in the same sentence. Sherry was here before I arrived twenty-three years ago, and I fully expected that she would be here long after I left.  She is, after all, made of hearty Norwegian stock, with a quick and facile mind that can grasp the intricacies of education policy better than most mortals.

But, for reasons best known to her and her benefits counselor, Sherry has decided to retire after thirty-plus years with the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. We’re delighted to welcome Maggie Anderson as RISCA’s new Education Director starting Monday morning, January 22nd, but more on that later. Now is Sherry time.

I can’t begin to describe how empowering it is to work with a person like Sherry.  Arts administrators, by definition, believe they are the best and most creative problem solvers. And we are, for the most part. But if people like me pretend to think in three-dimensions, Sherry is always there to help you look into a fourth dimension, and sometimes a fifth. In her quiet and unassuming way, she will suggest another way to address an issue, phrase a response or diffuse a crisis. There are literally more times than I can count where Sherry Brown has gotten me (and, by extension, our agency) out of a jam.  If I have an important document to write, Sherry is the first person I ask to read through it. Thank G-d she was always there to do it.

2018-01-19 16_44_21-riaea _ 2017 RIAEA Award WinnersSherry Brown as been the Patron Saint of Arts Education in our state. The relationships Sherry has built over the years — with the State Department of Education, the major arts education associations, the Alliance for Arts Education, VSA arts of Rhode Island, all of our major and small to medium size arts organizations, the list goes on — has been the foundation of our work to ensure that “all kids have access to quality arts education” in the home, school and community. Sherry’s work has brought forth a number of important programs and organizations, such as the Arts Talk program for teacher professional development, the Rhode Island Teaching Artist Center, the Rhode Island Arts Learning Network, and now an extensive media education program called Give Me 5 in cooperation with our Rhode Island Film & Television Office.

Sherry’s latest effort is the one that – Thank The Stars! – will keep her collaborating with us. Sherry has helped to organize a major Arts and Healthcare initiative in cooperation with the Rhode Island Department of Health, the State’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services, and the Brown University School of Public Health, among others. Sherry will be a volunteer Co-Chair of this effort, which allows us to keep her RISCA email active and her seat warm.

But for now, it’s literally the end of an era. Thank you, Sherry Brown, for all you have done to elevate Arts Education (writ large) in Rhode Island, and we will do our best to continue this important work. “Fair winds and Following Seas.”

Randy Rosenbaum, Executive Director, Rhode Island State Council on the Arts

PPAC Accepting Applications for Arts Scholarships 2018

The Providence Performing Arts Center is now accepting applica­tions for the ARTS Scholarships 2018 program, with a deadline of 3:00p on March 2, 2018.  The ARTS Scholarships program awards 30 scholarships valued at up to $500 each to qualified, talented Rhode Island middle school students (aged 11-14 as of June 1, 2018). These scholarships, sponsored by The Textron Charitable Trust and PPAC’s Annual Fund donors with support from Ocean State Charities Trust, offer young artists an opportunity to attend local, sum­mer arts education programs that will broaden their experiences in a chosen area of study.  Applications, guidelines, and list of summer arts programs are available online at or in person at the Providence Performing Arts Center’s Ad­ministrative Office, 220 Weybosset Street, 2nd Floor. For more information, visit the PPAC website or call Cynthia Goldsmith at 574-3105.

RISCA Grant Applications Now Open!

Our fall grant cycle applications are now open!

To apply for Project Grants for Individuals, Design Innovation Grant, and Fellowships in Painting, Drawing & Printmaking, Music Composition, Choreography, and New Genres, click here. For an overview of these grants and application guidelines, click here.

To apply for Arts Access Grants, Project Grants in Education, Arts in Healthcare Project Grants, Big Yellow School Bus, Open Artist Studio Tour, and Cultural Facilities Grants, click here. For an overview of organization grants and application guidelines, click here. For an overview of education grants and application guidelines, click here.

If you have any questions, or want advice about your application, contact the program staff member.