Thursday, April 10, 2008

"A bill to do something about a discriminatory tax situation that’s been affecting artists for 40 years"

A piece in the Chicago Reader on arts funding in Illinois includes the following:

"As things stand now, anyone who owns a piece of art can donate it to a charity and take a nice fat tax deduction equivalent to its current market value. But if the artist who created the work donates it, only the cost of materials can be deducted. We’re talking canvas and paint. This is a patently screwy arrangement, and local artists, who are often hit up to donate their work for charity auctions, have frequently lamented it. On the upside, all kinds of art qualify under the proposed [Artist-Museum Partnership Act], including 'literary, musical, artistic, or scholarly compositions or similar property,' so long as the work’s value is established. An NEA report ... makes the case for passage, arguing that the change will encourage artists to donate their work and especially aid small and medium-sized institutions."