Traditional Arts Network

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The Traditional Arts Network (TAN) is a consortium of traditional artists and ensembles. The TAN provides support and infrastructure for newcomer artists and cultural organizations from Maine’s Rwandan, Burundi, Congolese, Somali, and Somali Bantu communities, among others.

Rwandan dancer Clarisse Mukashyaka spontaneously bursts into dance as Guinean drummer Namory Keita performs at the Traditional Arts Network Gathering at Mayo Street Arts on 12/11/21. (Photo by Coco McCracken)

Rwandan dancer Clarisse Mukashyaka spontaneously bursts into dance as Guinean drummer Namory Keita performs at the Traditional Arts Network Gathering at Mayo Street Arts on 12/11/21. (Photo by Coco McCracken)

A collaboration between Mayo Street Arts and Cultural Resources, the TAN grew out of discussions with local traditional artists interested in networking with other immigrant communities and artists.

Through access to other artists; arts professionals like videographers, designers, and cultural specialists; as well as non-profit funding organizations, the TAN also offers immigrant artists the opportunity to focus on their creative practice and—when deemed desirable by the artists themselves—to introduce their work to a larger audience while maintaining their cultural traditions.

Membership in the TAN is open to anyone who would like to participate. We invite you to email TAN@mayostreetarts.org if you would like to receive information about upcoming events and opportunities.

Current TAN programs include:

  • Artist Gatherings – An opportunity to meet other artists, share your work, and learn from each other
  • TAN Fund – Micro grants for traditional artists ranging from $500-$1,000
  • Traditional Arts Apprenticeships – Financial support for artists who seek to pass along their cultural heritage to the next generation

The TAN is supported in part through support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.