The creative industry thrives in Kentucky, playing an important role in building and sustaining the
economic vibrancy of the communities in which it can be found. The industry creates jobs for Kentuckians
who spend money locally, pay taxes, and contribute to the quality of life where they live.
The Kentucky Arts Council released the state’s first Kentucky Creative Industry Report in December 2014. Since then, the agency has worked to identify strategies to meet and support the needs of those in the state’s arts and creative entrepreneurial community. In addition, the arts council is working to implement recommendations made in the report. Collectively, these efforts grow and support Kentucky’s creative industry.
As defined in the report, the Kentucky creative industry includes all individuals and companies whose products and services originate in artistic, cultural, creative, authentic and/or aesthetic content.
The report helps tell Kentucky’s creative story. It examines four segments of creative occupations — visual arts, design, performing arts and Kentucky media. It also evaluates a number of creative places and spaces in Kentucky. When determining aspects to be studied for the report, the arts council chose to look very broadly at the arts and creativity in Kentucky.
At a glance
- The Kentucky creative industry collectively employs 108,498 people.
- The creative industry represents 2.5 percent of Kentucky’s total employment.
- The creative industry accounts for annual earnings of $1.9 billion.
- The average wage of a creative worker is $34,299. (Wages vary greatly by segment.)
- The creative industry in Kentucky includes more self-employed individuals and microenterprises than any other economic sector, compared to national data.
Kentucky Arts Partnership organizations offer year-round opportunities to experience the arts in small rural communities, medium-sized towns and large cities alike. Total reported individual arts experiences was 5,840,732 between July 1, 2014, and June 30, 2015.
In FY2015, the Kentucky Arts Council invested $1.4 million in 96 nonprofit arts organizations through operational support grants. Data collected from 89 of the 97 Kentucky Arts Partnership grant recipients demonstrate significant returns in tax revenue, jobs and private funding. Kentucky arts partners also offer arts education opportunities, attract tourists and engage Kentuckians in their communities through the arts.
Arts mean business. Arts businesses contribute to the local economy through salaries,
taxes (payroll, sales and property), contracted services and facility maintenance. In addition, the
arts create vibrant communities that attract new businesses and individuals to the area.
Arts mean tourism. A thriving arts scene draws cultural tourists who stay longer and spend more money at hotels and restaurants than other tourists.
Arts mean success. Arts education engages students and helps them work collaboratively, think flexibly and solve problems, which prepares them for the modern workforce.
This page includes links to help you find out who your elected officials are and where you can register to vote in Kentucky.
The Kentucky Arts Council's Annual Report.
The Kentucky Arts Partnership grant provides unrestricted operating support to arts organizations to ensure that year-round participation in the arts is available to the people of Kentucky. The amount funded is derived from a formula based on the organization’s operating revenues, the panelists' assessment of the application and the funds available for the program.
Find quality craftsmanship and artistic excellence from Kentucky Crafted artists as you shop at these fine retail venues. Kentucky Crafted Retailers offer a wide variety of merchandise and actively promote the Kentucky Crafted brand. Enjoy your shopping experience at these stores and galleries officially designated by the Kentucky Arts Council as Kentucky Crafted Retailers.
Master Class is a daylong laboratory exploring topics and options for presenting live performance. Admission to Master Class is open to individuals and groups who plan for and present live performance including business and civic leaders, college and university activity boards, community groups and organizations, event planners, festival organizers, government agencies, librarians, Main Street managers, park directors, Trail Town participants, performing arts presenters, and others.
The legislated purpose of the Kentucky Arts Council is to develop and promote a broadly conceived state policy of support for the arts in Kentucky. As the state arts agency, the arts council is charged with the development and implementation of a state arts plan. Realizing that change is constant, this six-year plan is intended to evolve based on current needs, opportunities, challenges and environmental factors. An annual review will be conducted, as well as a mid-point assessment at the three-year mark. To prioritize and assign specific tasks, the agency produces an annual work plan outlining the objectives, strategies and actions on which the agency will focus during the current year.
This page contains links to documents covering a wide range of advocacy issues. The page contains categories sorted by general advocacy, arts education, creative industry and cultural tourism.
Page last updated: September 20, 2016
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