Regional Cultural Arts

Regional Cultural Arts

Why Regional Cultural Arts?

We believe that access to the arts provides meaningful connections and communications between individuals, our community and the greater society. The arts also contribute to community vitality, civic engagement, while fostering social capital and empowering residents of a community. Engaging in the arts creates a strong shared identity and instills pride in cultural heritage.

An important indicator of a community’s vitality is the presence of the arts; there are 525 registered nonprofits working on behalf of arts-related causes in the Triangle. 

Nonprofit arts and cultural organizations generate $377.1 million of spending and event-related spending by their audiences in the Triangle. 

A vibrant arts and cultural community is one of the Triangle’s greatest assets. The region’s arts and cultural wealth includes large iconic organizations as well as a plethora of local galleries, festivals, music organizations, public art, heritage sites, tours and community venues dedicated to supporting the arts.  The local arts sector and the creative people they employ enhance our quality of life, stimulate innovation to attract and retain talent, provide a magnet for cultural tourism, and contribute to overall economic vitality.

Nonprofit art organizations provide significant contributions to state and local economies, and provide services and activities in high demand by the public. However, these organizations face ongoing challenges such as competition for resources and audiences, followed by inadequate artist/performing/rehearsal space, lack of funding, sustainability and organization capacity-challenges also identified at the national level.

New Realities Triangle Regional Initiative

Triangle Community Foundation invests in arts and culture organizations within the Triangle to further promote the sustainability and growth of the region’s vital nonprofit arts and culture sector.  Triangle Community Foundation and the North Carolina Arts Council have teamed up to create an organizational development program for arts organizations located in the four-county region of the Triangle, designed to provide these organizations with the concepts and effective tools necessary for appropriate growth and sustainability. The New Realities Triangle Regional Initiative is also structured to help forge a shared regional identity for the Triangle arts groups and encourage broader thinking about opportunities, resources, challenges, and solutions.


  • The New Realities Triangle Regional Initiative is designed for small to mid-sized arts organizations with budgets between $100,000 and $1,000,000 in annual expenses for the most recently completed fiscal year.
  • Organizations will be selected to represent a range of disciplines.
  • Selection will be based on the organization’s readiness to benefit from the consultancy and its ability to contribute to the larger discussion about the arts in the region.

Current Partners

These partners received funding through the New Realities Triangle Regional Initiative*

Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle
Classical Voice of NC
Durham Symphony Orchestra
Hidden Voices
Justice Theater Project
Music Maker Relief Foundation
Shakori Hills Community Arts Center
St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation
The ArtsCenter

*as of March 2018

References – Stern, M. & Seifert S. (2008) From Creative Economy to Creative Society. A social policy paradigm for the creative sector has the potential to address urban poverty as well as urban vitality, National Center for Charitable Statistics, Americans for the Arts (2012) Arts & Economic Prosperity IV. The Economic Impact of Nonprofit Arts and Culture Organizations and Their Abioudiences in Durham, Orange and Wake Counties’ total economic activity combined. Chatham County information not available, Americans for the Arts (2012) Arts & Economic Prosperity IV. The Economic Impact of Nonprofit Arts and Culture Organizations and Their Audience in Durham, Orange and Wake Counties. Chatham County information not available, Guidi, S. (2012) Triangle Community Foundation. Report to the Community Programs Task Force: An Assessment of community needs in five focus areas of the Triangle, Wolf, Keens, and Co. (2004). Durham Cultural Master Plan. Durham County Visitors Bureau

We are so pleased to be partnering with the Foundation, because they share our belief that the arts are one of the region’s most significant assets. Together we have designed this initiative to build the sustainability of arts organizations, help forge a shared identity for the arts, and collaboratively expand resources.

Nancy Trovillion, North Carolina Arts Council


Libby Richards

Senior Community Programs Officer
Phone 919.474.8370 ext:4014