Art makes a significant economic impact in Portland

How much is a nonprofit art industry worth to a given metro? While it may seem like an odd question, the arts are not necessarily attributed with great economic contributions – until now.  According to research conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nonprofit arts and culture organizations in Portland generate more than $253 million in economic activity. This income was divided up across multiple regional economic segments, including salaries, merchandise purchases and housing sales. At least a few thousand locals have purchased real estate in Portland using the money they’ve earned via the nonprofit art industry.

The annual Arts and Economic Prosperity IV, which measured art spending in 182 metros and counties, concluded that nonprofit organizations spent $152 million on employee salaries, supplies, contracts for purchases and other general expenses in 2010, The Portland Business Journal reports. In addition to that sum, art patrons spent another $101 million paying for meals, parking, gifts and souvenirs and child care.

In 2010, the final sum for spending by the nonprofit art and culture industry was $253,514,049. The study dissected the economic impact of spending in detail, and the source states that the industry supported 8,529 full-time equivalent jobs and generated a resident household income of $195,356,000. In addition, an outstanding $10,382,000 in state government revenue and $10,975,000 in local government funds was generated.

Portland supports the arts. The Portland Art Museum frequently provides guests access to pieces ranging from classical works such as Monet’s paintings to emerging black and white photography, and even the three-dimensional, vibrant mediums of Mike Kelley. Located at 1219 Southwest Park Avenue, the museum is open six days a week and features exhibits in multiple mediums. Local residents interested in supporting the arts can visit the museum and check out the works of unique artists, all with varying points of view.
For a more unconventional look into the local art scene, consider checking out the Peoples Art of Portland gallery. Located at 700 Southwest Fifth Avenue, on the third floor, Suite 4005, the gallery displays numerous unique exhibitions. For example, the "Outside the Box" exhibition held on May 19 featured 40 local Portland artists that had been challenged to create works of art that escape the frame.