Document Type

Master's Report

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Arts Administration




This internship report describes the student's experiences from January until May 1992, while she worked for the Visual Arts Department of the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. The paper will also give the reader some insight into the history and the current operating conditions of the Center. The Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) is a non-profit, government and community supported institution, and is the home of the nation's third largest artists' organization, the National Association of Artists' Organization. The CAC offers over 250 performances, exhibits, screenings, concerts, workshops, classes and lectures all year round. In addition, it provides services to artists, including information on fellowships and grants, umbrella project support and technical assistance. Exhibits are often accompanied by forums and panel discussions to enhance the public's awareness and appreciation of the works. Programming draws from local, regional, national and international art communities and attracts an annual audience of more than 50,000. At the time of this internship the CAC was in its second year in newly renovated facilities. Prior to 1990, the Center had been a dusty and drafty warehouse that had provided alternative space to show contemporary work in all the arts since 1976. Economic conditions in New Orleans, as in many parts of the South, are in recession and local financial support for cultural activities and facilities lags far behind expenses. The Visual Arts Department was, along with all other departments of the institution, severely affected by budgetary problems and attendant personnel shortages. The Center needs a lung-term fiscal policy with provisions for contingencies.