Arts Agency Gets New Executive Director

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, January 15, 2007

If Rhyena Halpern has her way, Sacramento may soon have a lot more artists living in town. 

"We’re really interested in doing things to help retain artists so that they can afford to live here." 

The art commission’s new executive director says one way they plan to do that is with a new funding program. 

"It’s called micro-grants where we can give small grant awards out to artists in a kind of revolving door manner."

Halpern says it’s an exciting time for the arts in Sacramento. She says all the growth that’s going on in the downtown area and in other parts of town means there’s more opportunity to bring art into public places. 

"From Downtown, not just the restaurants that are growing, but the airport’s going to get a new terminal, we’re seeing more nightlife, people want to go out to things and know what’s going on so the arts are just really important."

Halpern – who has a Masters in Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts – says another goal is to expand arts education in local schools.