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About Us

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is the local nonprofit arts and culture agency that enhances the city’s quality of life through advancing and investing in the arts and diverse cultural programming. The work of HAA encourages Houston’s development and shapes its global reputation by fostering tourism and supporting and promoting the city’s creative economy.

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Public Art

Creating public spaces for civic and cultural use requires artists, designers, architects, and the community to collaborate. By actively fostering these partnerships, both public and private, HAA’s Civic Art + Design program initiates, manages, and maintains public artworks throughout Houston. It serves a vital role as catalyst for change that generates a culturally relevant and rich environment for residents and visitors alike.

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Folklife + Civic Engagement

Houston Arts Alliance’s Folklife + Civic Engagement program identifies and honors the artistic and cultural traditions of the city’s tremendously diverse and various communities and works to address the needs of all residents through engagement, citizen-driven initiatives, and equitable community outcomes. The Folklife program has been in existence since 2010. The addition of Civic Engagement to its portfolio was enacted through an HAA bylaws change in 2016.

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Grants are a fundamental means of promoting excellence in the creative sector. On behalf of the City of Houston, HAA awards approximately 225 grants annually to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and individual artists through a competitive grant allocation process.

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Capacity Building

Houston Arts Alliance provides voice and leadership through its support of arts organizations and individual artists with programs and services that help build and foster a vibrant and creative community—these programs and services help to ensure that the arts professionals’ creative contributions remain a vital part of community life across Houston and the region.

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Houston Arts Alliance continues to play an important role in arts and culture research projects, initiating and participating in studies that demonstrate the far-reaching impact of arts and culture on our economy and quality of life.

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Get Involved

Looking for a way to lend a hand? Investing in the arts and culture is an investment in the quality of life for all Houstonians. Join Houston Arts Alliance as a donor, member or volunteer!

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Houston Arts Alliance utilizes different vehicles to communicate with it diverse audiences, ranging from the city’s arts and culture community to residents to tourists. Find out more about HAA’s electronic newsletters and connect with us through social media. Our online Press Room provides resources for members of the media.

Thursday, September 28, 2017
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Monday, December 18, 2017
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Wednesday, January 10, 2018
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How We Are Funded


Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) was established in 2006 as a public-private initiative to support the arts and culture in Houston and to advance Houston’s reputation as an arts and culture destination.

Organized as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and identified by the City of Houston as the city’s designated, nonprofit local arts and culture agency, HAA leverages primarily City of Houston funds with other government resources and private support to enhance our city’s image nationally and internationally while improving the quality of life for all Houstonians.

Approximately 55% of HAA’s budget comes from Hotel Occupancy Tax (see below of breakdown of overall Hotel Occupancy Tax distributions) and 30% from the City of Houston’s Percent for Art Program, which supports commissions of new civic art projects as well as conservation of existing artworks. The remaining 15% of HAA’s budget comes from private fundraising (grants/contributions/other revenue) for programs and special projects. HAA is committed to raising funds for only those projects and initiatives that the Arts Alliance is uniquely positioned to provide the community.

PLEASE NOTE: We are in the process of updating the Hotel Occupancy Tax graph below.

» Download current Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) distributions



A portion of City of Houston revenues from Hotel Occupancy Taxes (5.7% of total HOT funds)
Examples of use:

  • General Operating grants to nonprofit arts and culture organizations, arts project grants to community nonprofits, and grants to individual artists
  • Capacity building grants and services, and arts marketing/cultural tourism grants and partnerships

City of Houston Civic Art Funding
Examples of use:

  • Commissions of new civic art projects         
  • Direct acquisitions of artwork
  • Conservation and collection management


Texas Commission on the Arts
Example of use: Touring + Neighborhood Arts Program grants

National Endowment for the Arts
Example of use: Folklife + Civic Engagement programming

National Endowment for the Humanities
Example of use: Folklife + Civic Engagement programming

Library of Congress
Example of use: Folklife + Civic Engagement programming


Contract-based municipal funding accounts for 85% of HAA’s annual budget – 55% HOT and 30% civic art funding. The remaining 15% is derived from other public funding, individuals, corporations and foundations and is directed toward HAA’s public engagement and capacity building initiatives.


HAA is committed to raising funds for only those projects and initiatives that the Alliance is uniquely positioned to provide to the community. We do not compete with initiatives produced by HAA grantees. Examples of HAA special initiatives include temporary art projects such as The Blue Trees by Australian artist Konstantin Dimopoulos, Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads by Chinese political artist Ai Weiwei, Portable On Demand Art (PODA), and James Surls’s Magnifcient Seven exhibition; religious music concerts Voices of the Spirit; the three-month project Transported + Renewed; and the exhibition Stories of a Workforce: Celebrating the Centennial of the Houston Ship Channel.


Houston Endowment, Inc.
Examples of use:

  • Capacity Building Initiative
  • Arts & Business Council of Greater Houston
  • Folklife + Civic Engagement programming

The Brown Foundation, Inc. of Houston
Example of use: Temporary art projects

The Vaughan Foundation
Example of use: Stories of a Workforce

The Morgan Family Fund
Example of use: Voices of the Spirit

Tudor, Pickering & Holt
Example of use: Arts & Business Council of Greater Houston

Vinson & Elkins
Example of use: Arts & Business Council of Greater Houston

The Jamail Family Foundation
Example of use: Innovation grants to arts and culture organizations

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