Iowa Arts Council - Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs
Contact: Dawn Martinez Oropeza
Community Arts Coordinator

Community Arts Program

Need to talk it through?

In addition to the resources listed below, Iowa Arts Council staff is ready and willing to consult with you or your organization about community arts ideas, plans, and opportunities. 

Assistance can range from a simple email or phone conversation, to more in-depth consulting.  Reimbursement for travel (at state rates) or staff time (at $25/hour) may be requested for consultations that require substantial time; however we make every effort to keep such costs to a minimum.

For assistance with community arts development, contact:
Dawn Martinez Oropeza


Economic Development via the Arts

The following studies and articles can be found on the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs' site at

Iowa's First Creative Economy Study
by David Swenson, Iowa State University

Livable Cities and Towns are Key to Iowa's Future
by Governor Tom Vilsack

Imagine Iowa 2010: A New Strategy for a New Economy
by Anita Walker, Director of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs

Accessibility Issues

Accessibility involves both location (the facility) and the content (the activity or product) of the program. Thinking about accessibility issues (e.g., sign-language interpreters, cassette recordings of printed materials, audio description describers or large-print labeling) is the key to ensuring that persons with disabilities will be able to fully participate in community programs and events.

Americans with Disabilities Act: Suggestions for Communicating, Working with and Writing about People With Disabilities
This resource is designed to help in your efforts towards greater accessibility. The information includes portrayal issues, terminology, priorities for accessibility, statistics, financial considerations, ideas for compliance, and much more.

Accessibility Planning Guide: A Step-by-step Approach for Planning Your Accessibility
This resource guides you toward ensuring access to the arts for people with disabilities. It includes steps to begin your planning process, conducting an accessibility audit of your policies, programs and services, as well as a simple planning outline.

The Little Handbook of Disability Etiquette: Generally Acceptable Guidelines
This handbook contains information about the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. It features frequently asked questions, conversation and interviewing etiquette, a resource list, plus a simple explanation of the difference between disability and handicap.

Accessibility Links
Links to all kinds of educational and useful accessibility information.

Finding Artists for Community Events

The Iowa Artist Directory is a great tool for galleries, presenting organizations, schools, communities, civic and business organizations to hook-up with Iowa's artists for employment and other opportunities.

Many of the artists in the Iowa Artist Directory have been through a jurying process to be part of one or more of the Iowa Arts Council’s three selective rosters: the Folk and Traditional, Performing, and Teaching Artists Rosters. Descriptions for these artists include specific information related to the rosters.

Other Organizations and Directories

Arts in Education Links
Arts Service Organizations
Business & Networking Links for Artists, Nonprofits and For-profits
Community Arts Councils
Iowa Galleries and Museums
National & Regional Arts Organizations
Organization Management and Sustainability Links
Performing Arts Presenters
Public Art & Design Links