Arts Connection is dedicated to stimulating creative and economic vitality and enriching lives throughout the communities we serve by providing support, promotion, education, and advocacy for the arts.
Fostering cross sector partnerships that engage the arts as a vehicle for community building, economic empowerment, and narrative change.
Connecting artists and arts organizations to financial resources, local networks, and professional consultants and opportunities that enhance their creative endeavors, events and projects.
Building the creative capacity and network of every artist, arts leader, arts organization and cultural institution across the county to advance the cultural, social and economic life of our communities.
Serving as a central advocate, voice, and resource for how to utilize creative strategies and approaches to solve some of the most pressing county wide priorities.
Funding we’ve helped arts organizations in San Bernardino County receive to date
Artists we’ve helped find jobs or hired to date
Organizations we’ve helped
Join our region wide leadership group today. Learn about our regional platform and approach and find out when our upcoming meets are.
Bookmark our grant funding page to stay up to date on emerging opportunities for regional, state and national funding sources. This document is an open source Google Doc you can access anytime.
We keep an extensive library of past and current reports and publications relevant to the field. Take some time and explore the collection here.
Steve Thomas (1950-2022) passed peacefully on November 24, 2022. During his incredible life, he shared his passion for people and photography during a long professional career in the arts. With over 30 years of teaching, curating and exhibiting in Southern California, Steve was also a generous mentor and volunteer for causes he deeply cared about.
Steve worked as the Curator of Collections at the UCR/California Museum of Photography at the University of California Riverside (1995-2006). In 2006 after retirement from UCR, Steve accepted the position of Curator of Education at the Riverside Art Museum and in 2007 he jumped at the opportunity to become a hometown Museum Curator at the Ontario Museum of History and Art. Steve was a long-standing board member for Arts Connection, helping to found the Arts Innovator Micro Grant program, in addition to dedicated efforts to be an ambassador for the arts in the entire region. He faihfully attended almost every event and rolled up his sleeves to help hang shows, staple info packets and, most importantly, build bridges.
As a board member for Chaffey Community Museum of Art, he also sat on the steering committee for the City of Ontario Community Life and Culture Agency. Steve was one of the many organizers for the inaugural 2018 Ontario Arts Festival. He co-lead the effort to re-establish art exhibitions at Ontario International Airport, displaying artwork by artists who live and work within the region that is served by airport. He also founded the popular First Artist program, giving regional artists a way to connect during COVID and beyond. We will miss Steve deeply and are incredibly grateful to his guidance and support of our work for close to 5 years.
Arts Connection is a state-local partner to the California Arts Council, designated by the county board of supervisors to serve the county’s citizens. As the local arts agency, we are officially designated to provide financial support, services, or other programs to a variety of cultural arts organizations, individual artists, and the diverse communities of the county.