11 Programs Awarded Belmont Cultural Council Grants

Photo: A painted transformer by artist Liz LaManche at Concord and Pleasant streets adjacent to Town Hall.

State Rep Dave Rogers, State Sen. Will Brownsberger and Chair of the Belmont Cultural Council Vicki Amalfitano recently announced the award of 11 grants totaling $7,900 for cultural programs in Belmont during 2022, through Belmont’s allocation from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

As COVID-19 restrictions have been of continued concern, the Cultural Council looked largely to support those long-standing institutions that have enriched the Belmont Community with music, fine arts, interpretive science and humanitarian initiatives throughout the years.

The 2022 grantees are:
Belmont Porchfest Mural Project, received $1,300
Belmont World Film’s 20th International Film Series, received $800
Payson Park Musical Festival Concert, received $1,100
Belmont Art Association: Beautifying Belmont’s Transformer Boxes, received $1,000
Belmont Chinese American Association Documentary Screening and Discussion with
the Filmmakers, received $400
Daniel Butler Elementary School Multicultural Fair, received $400
Musical Baseball Show at the Belmont Senior Center, received $300
The Dorothy & Charles Mosesian Center: ASL Interactive Storytime Workshop Program,
received $600
International Asian Music Festival, received $900
The Benton Lending Library, received $500
Powers Music School: Musical Storytelling Program, received $600.

Decisions about which activities to support are made at the community level by a council of municipally appointed volunteers who are all Belmont residents. The members of the Belmont Cultural Council are Chair Vicki Amalfitano; Secretary Jenny Angel; Evelyn Corsini; Volkan Efe; Treasurer Annette Goodro; Kathleen Hagan; Non-voting member Nancy Linde; Gloria Pimentel; Co-Chair Millie Rahn; Non-voting member Rebecca Richards; and May Ye.

‘And There Are Pansies’ As You Travel Through Cushing Square [Video]

Photo: Artist Grace Julian Murthy working on her traffic signal control canvas painting pansies.

On a recent Sunday afternoon in August, a day after one of the handful of heatwaves that settled over New England was finally pushed aside, pansies appeared in Cushing Square.

They weren’t the ones emerging from a pot or some lonely stretch of earth. Rather it was the impression of viola tricolor var. hortensis by the artist Grace Julian Murthy who used as her canvas the traffic signal control box on the sidewalk adjacent the Bradford Apartments at the corner of Common and Trapelo.

“I like to paint things that are overlooked,” said Murthy, who works as a graphic designer. “Because pansies are so prevalent, you don’t get to see there beauty.”

Using acrylics (it dries quicker and has a vibrant palette) Murthy applied purple, yellow and black on a white base to create a field of pansies all within the aluminum box – originally a dark green – protecting the expensive signal and traffic controller equipment inside.

Murthy was one of three artists selected to paint boxes by the Belmont Art Association which sponsored for a second year the Transforming Belmont Public Art Project. The artists received a $750 stipend from the Belmont Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Mass Cultural Council.

Belmont Cultural Council Awards Grant For 2021

Photo: Awards are announced by the Belmont Cultural Council

State Representative Dave Rogers, State Senator Will Brownsberger and Nancy Linde, Chair of the Belmont Cultural Council, have announced the award of eight grants totaling $8,370, for cultural programs in Belmont during 2021. At this difficult time of world-wide pandemic, the Cultural Council looked largely to support those long-standing institutions that have enriched the Belmont Community with music, fine arts, interpretive science, and humanitarian initiatives throughout the years.

The 2021 Grantees are:

  • Belmont Gallery of Art: Nesting, a Bird-Themed Public Art Project, $725
  • Belmont World Film’s International Film Series  $925
  • The Dorothy & Charles Mosesian Center: Visual and Performing Arts for local children $450
  • The Benton Lending Library  $925
  • Powers Music School: Online Community Outreach  $925
  • Habitat/Mass. Audubon (2 Grants): Sensory Friendly Days ($700) and Birding in Belmont ($420)
  • Belmont Art Association: Beautifying Belmont’s Transformer Boxes $3,300

Decisions about which activities to support are made at the community level by a board of municipally appointed volunteers who are all Belmont residents. The members of the Belmont Cultural Council are: Vicki Amalfitano; Jenny Angel (Secretary); Evelyn Corsini; Volkan Efe; Annette Goodro (Treasurer, non-voting member); Juliet Jenkins (Non-voting member); Nancy Linde (Chair); Haixi Liu; Millie Rahn; Rebecca Richards; and May Ye.

The Belmont Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences, and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

State Representative Dave Rogers says of these grants:  “The Belmont Cultural Council plays a large role in enriching our community, and these grants will help individuals and organizations tremendously. The public health emergency has impacted the arts community profoundly. Now more than ever, we need to support the cultural arts, sciences, and humanities education.”

Meanwhile, State Senator Will Brownsberger reaffirms his support of the local artists and cultural organizations across the state: “Now, more than ever, as we struggle to understand a changing world, the insights offered by art are essential.  I’m grateful to the Belmont Cultural Council for their hard work to identify and support promising artists.”

The Belmont Cultural Council will seek applications again in the fall. For guidelines and complete information on the Belmont Cultural Council, visit the Facebook page (www.facebook.com/BelmontCulturalCouncil), the website (www.belmontculturalcouncil.org/) or email at belmontculturalcouncil@yahoo.com. Applications and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online at www.mass-culture.org.

Belmont Cultural Council Awards 13 Local Grants for 2017

Photo: Storytelling was one part of Literacy on the Lawn.
Lectures at the Beech Street Center, the secret lives of honeybees and concealed poetry are just some of the 13 grants totaling $5,450 awarded to arts, science, and humanities programs in Belmont in 2017  by the Belmont Cultural Council.  

This year’s award recipients include: 

  • Howie Newman providing music for seniors.
  • Bates and Tincknell with songs based on earth rhythms for families.
  • Delvena Theatre Company offering an intergeneration theater experience.
  • Evening lectures at the Belmont Council on Aging.
  • Musical storytelling at the Powers Music School.
  • Literacy on the Lawn providing a children’s story hour and petting zoo at the Belmont Woman’s Club.
  • A honeybee presentation sponsored by the Wellington PTO. 
  • Massachusetts Audubon Habitat sponsoring a science program on birds and insects.
  • Kate Bowen organizing a hidden poetry of Belmont program.
  • Belmont World Film Family Festival.
  • Jenn Houle offering a searching for life exhibit at Massachusetts Audubon Habitat.

“It’s the local volunteers who really make this system work,” said Laurie Gianotti, chair of the Council.

“They make limited resources go as far as possible, and they make the tough decisions about which projects should be supported. Thanks to them, the arts, sciences, and humanities are part of people’s everyday lives in every community across the state,” she said.

The Belmont Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences, and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

Decisions about which activities to support are made at the community level by a board of municipally appointed volunteers. The members of the Belmont Cultural Council are:

  • Laurie Gianotti, chair
  • Annette Goodro, treasurer
  • Sarah Frieberg Ellison, secretary
  • Jennifer Angel
  • John Baboian
  • Jirair Hovespian
  • Juliet Jenkins
  • Nancy Linde
  • Rebecca Richards
  • Arlyn Ruffman

The Belmont Cultural Council will seek applications again in the fall. For local guidelines and complete information on the Belmont Cultural Council, go to  www.mass-culture.org/belmontApplications are due Oct. 15, 2017.

Workshop To Help Residents Apply for Belmont Cultural Grants Tonight

Organizations, schools and residents with creative ideas for cultural, scientific and technological activities and events in Belmont are invited to apply for grants from the Belmont Cultural Council, which was awarded $5,000 from the Massachusetts Cultural Council 

Grant applications are being accepted now and must be postmarked by October 15th for the 2016 funding cycle.

To assist all those interested in applying for a grant, the Council is holding a grant writing workshop today, Wednesday, Sept. 23, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Belmont Public Library. Contact Juliet Jenkins at jerbly@yahoo.com for more information about the workshop.

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Recent local grant recipient have included Belmont World Film, a multi-cultural fair, the Winslow Homer exhibit at the Belmont Woman’s Club and a printmaking workshop at Habitat.

For grant application forms, specific guidelines, and more, visit the Belmont Cultural Council website or contact Laurie Gianotti, the BCC Chair, at laurie2276@comcast.net.