The Ice House Cultural sent out the following message today:
“Attention Art Patrons: We would like to inform you that the Ice House Cultural Center will be closing its doors in September 2009, as we prepare for our transition to the Oak Cliff Cultural Center in 2010. For over a decade, the Ice House has provided Oak Cliff and the surrounding communities with diverse art and cultural experiences. We are extremely grateful to the patrons and artists that have supported the center over the years and we hope that you share our excitement as we look towards a new era of artistic and cultural opportunities at the Oak Cliff Cultural Center.
“The Oak Cliff Cultural will be located at 223 E. Jefferson Blvd., next door to the Texas Theater. The center will include an art gallery, a multi-purpose studio and some classroom space. Stay tuned for updates on the opening of the new center.”
There are a couple of questions that remain unanswered, the biggest of which is: When exactly in 2010 will the new center open? We probably won’t know the answer to that until after the 2009-10 city budget is passed in September. In the working version of the budget, this bid is for …
” …funding for 3 months of operation for the Oak Cliff Cultural Center to open the
center in January 2010; includes funding for 1 Manager and 1 Coordinator.”
… falls below the funding line, meaning the $30,000 needed to open the center in January isn’t there. And seven more bids are stacked above this one in the priority list, meaning it’s doubtful that funding will make its way to the center when City Manager Mary Suhm submits her final budget proposal to the City Council on Monday.
Whether that means that the center will open later in the year instead of January is unclear. Calls are out. I’ll report back when I have more information.
UPDATE: Thanks to Office of Cultural Affairs Director Maria Munoz-Blanco for clearing up some of these questions in the comments section. It’s sounding like the final budget proposal might be ready to go on Friday – if it is, we’ll certainly look into how funding for the new center is handled. In the meantime, Ice House Cultural Center Director Hortencia Rubalcava sends along in an e-mail the following information concerning the futures of groups who call the Ice House home:
“The art groups that use the Ice House will have access to their classroom space until September 12, 2009 (however, this is not the closing date for the center). After the 12th, they may decide to continue their classes at other venues but that will be entirely up to each group. At this time we don’t have much information on our transition other than what was included in our newsletter, but we will try to share any updates when they become available. “