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From the Director

Laine HarberIt’s an exciting time at the Arkansas Arts Center! The public phase of our capital campaign was just announced. “Reimagining the Arkansas Arts Center: Campaign for Our Cultural Future,” a $128 million special fundraising campaign, will realize a stunning new Arts Center for the 21st Century.

At a special event on the evening of May 15, Campaign Co-Chairs Harriet and Warren Stephens announced that the campaign has raised $118 million of its $128 million goal to-date. I am so grateful for their steadfast leadership and support.

The project will result in a comprehensive reenvisioning of the AAC by renowned architect Jeanne Gang and her practice, Studio Gang. The new AAC will include a revitalized landscape, designed by Kate Orff and SCAPE, which will expand the connection between the architecture and MacArthur Park. The Campaign will also provide transition and opening support, and endowment funds.

Scheduled for completion in early 2022, this project will strengthen the Arkansas Arts Center as the region’s pre-eminent cultural and arts education institution for visual and performing arts.

Going forward, in order to meet our ambitious goal, we will be reaching out to the entire community and state for support. There is a special recognition program for donors at every gift level, and we will need everyone’s help to realize this ambitious project!

This project would not have been possible without the tremendous vision, leadership and generosity of our Campaign Co-Chairs, Harriet and Warren Stephens, and the generous lead donors to the campaign to date, including the Windgate Foundation, Harriet and Warren Stephens and the City of Little Rock.

I would like to take a moment to also recognize our Major Gifts Committee: our Co-Chairs, Merritt Dyke and Terri Erwin, and our Committee members: Isabel Anthony, Curtis Finch, Ben Hussman, Michael Mayton, George O’Connor, and Robert Tucker.

On a personal note, I would also like to thank AAC Board President Merritt Dyke for all of his incredible hard work on the project. Read more about the campaign and the project.

Big changes are also coming to our Children’s Theatre program! We are expanding across the state with “Children’s Theatre Restaged,” an expansion of our theatre touring program, and planning additional performances in Riverdale. Read more about Children's Theatre Restaged.

Don’t miss the final Delta and YAA exhibitions and POP! Out of the Vault, on view through June 30. Learn more about the history of the Arkansas Arts Center and plans for its future by visiting Then, Now Next. Stop by our Museum Shop for special discounts and take in lunch or brunch in Watercolor in the Park…it’s all closing on June 30, 2019. Make some special memories with us!

I am incredibly grateful to the AAC Board of Trustees and Foundation Board of Directors for their vision and support to ensure that our outreach and mission continue and remain vibrant in our community and state during our construction period.

We will also be celebrating with you, our valued members, and our community at large as we close one chapter of the Art Center’s history and begin a new one. Join us on June 28 for a special closing party for the 61st Annual Delta Exhibition, where we will premiere a documentary produced by the Arts Center called DELTA 60 and enjoy a closing reception as we say goodbye to the final exhibition in our MacArthur Park home before we reopen in 2022.

Our Riverdale space will open beginning September 2019, so please mark your calendars and stay tuned for more information about the Museum Shop, art classes, open houses and member parties at this new location. We hope you will come visit!

This is an historical time for the Arkansas Arts Center. As always, thank you, our valued members, for all your continued support. We hope you will stay with us every step of the way!

Sincerely,

Laine Harber


Interim Director, CFO
Arkansas Arts Center

Business Hours: Mon – Fri 9 AM - 5 PM       Address: P.O. Box 2137, Little Rock, Arkansas 72203-2137      Phone: 501.372.4000

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