Florida Keys Council of the Arts

The Florida Keys Council of the Arts is a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation in a public-private partnership with Monroe County government since 1997.  As the designated Local Arts Agency by Florida Statute #265.32, we are committed to our leadership role as the community’s umbrella organization for arts and culture for the Keys.

A nine-member board of directors guides the council, assisted by three alternate directors, three directors emeritus and advisory members. Daily functions are carried out by the executive director, staff and valued volunteers.

The Arts Council provides services and grants to visual and performing artists, arts organizations, students and the public, striving to instill a passion for and participation in the arts.

Funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Florida Department of State – Division of Cultural Affairs, Monroe County Board of County Commissioners, Monroe County Tourist Development Council, the Community Foundation of the Florida Keys, South Florida Cultural Consortium and private donations.

2017 Was a Busy Year

In 2017, the Council launched the Florida Keys Sculpture Trail, sponsored by local philanthropists John Padget and Jacob Dekker. Nine monumental sculptures were re-sited to the Keys from New York City’s Riverside Park.

In February 2017, more than 2,000 elementary students attended the South Florida Symphony Orchestra sponsored by the Arts Council and Monroe County School District.

Continuing on last year’s success, we partnered with the Waterfront Playhouse to bring 150  Key West High School students to the musical, Forever Plaid. 

The State of the Arts annual membership meeting celebrated the Council’s 20th Anniversary with one of the founding Board members as our guest speaker, Nance Frank.

April 2017 was busy with our strategic planning board retreat, and we wrapped up the season in June 2017 with an exquisite exhibit at the Historic Gato building by the Tropical Botanic artists.

In November 2017, our members’ exhibit, also at the Historic Gato building, was themed  Changing Tides – and reflected on the ebb and flow of the water, sky and island living challenges and joys.

Annual Connections Project

The Arts Council’s annual Connections Project – A Mosaic of the Keys, provides 400 free 6- by 6-inch blank canvases for Monroe County artists and community members to create their own unique piece of art. We offer free workshops throughout the Keys to assist those that may need guidance and materials. We then collect, assemble and exhibit the 400 canvases as one large mosaic.

Each year, we travel to six Keys’ locations and celebrate at each venue with an opening reception. Each May, we disassemble the mosaic and each canvas is shipped to our eagerly awaiting collectors.

The 2017 Fine Print

  • 6,250 students impacted by arts education programs this year
  • 35,000 arts events brochures distributed by volunteers throughout Monroe County annually
  • 3,120 community members to date have contributed to The Connections Project : A Mosaic of the Keys
  • $138,295 awarded to teaching artists for Artists in Schools grants to date
  • $207,000 awarded to Monroe County artists to date through the South Florida Cultural Consortium Visual & Media Artists Fellowships
  • $1,300,000 administered by FKCA for The Cultural Umbrella committee of the Tourist Development Council promoting arts events this year
  • 10,975 total artists and audiences impacted by ArtReach grants this year
  • 1,156,000 total audience accessed on-line calendars for www.fla-keys.com and www.keysarts.com
  • 133 artists on our Monroe County Art in Public Places Pre-Qualified registry
  • 612,862 total audience members engaged in performances and programs annually in Monroe County