Indian Pueblo Cultural Center eyes big plans with $100K grant

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – As arts and culture rebounds from the pandemic, a major cultural center in the area is getting some big help.

The Indian Pueblo Cultural is set to receive a $100,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The grant is a big help for the IPCC as they had to reinvent themselves during the height of the pandemic.

Officials curated many of its exhibits virtually because doors were closed. While the closure was a setback, the virtual exhibits also widened their audiences internationally.

"If there is a silver lining to the pandemic, it is that people had a greater appreciation of and understanding of the impact of the Pueblos on our cultural and economic life here in New Mexico," said Dr. Beverlee McClure, the Vice President of Cultural & Community Engagement.

Dr. McClure says the grants are just one indication that things are looking up – visits were also up to pre-pandemic levels during Balloon Fiesta week and Indigenous People’s Day. The grant is set to ensure they fully get back to where they were pre-pandemic and hopefully do even more.

"When someone comes into the museum, they see what we have on exhibit but what they don’t realize is we have more than 4,000 items that we have in storage and in a vault," Dr. McClure said. "It’s everything from jewelry to pottery to paintings and we need to be able to fund a way to make sure that’s preserved in a way and also want to be sure that we can digitize it so anyone from anywhere is able to see those collections."

The new positions funded by the grant will free up money for more programming for the public.

An exhibit will be opening later this month featuring skateboard decks decorated by Indigenous artists. An Indigenous youth film boot camp is also set to take place this summer.