Fund History

Lambent Foundation leverages the critical role of arts and culture at the intersection of social justice. Through our grantmaking and creative programs we explore the impact of contemporary art as a strategy for promoting sustainable cultural practices in New York City, New Orleans and Nairobi.

How did Lambent come into being?

We experienced a rumbling starting in 2008, as we began to recognize increasing disconnects between critical progressive movement building and truly moving hearts and minds. Our aim is to shed light on the potential for aesthetics and beauty to serve alongside advocacy and organizing efforts for social justice.

How did Lambent become involved in supporting organizations in New York City, New Orleans and Nairobi?

We are drawn to landscapes where art and culture are infused in the fabric of daily life. From visionary spaces in our own backyard of New York City, to our nations cultural hub of New Orleans, to the networks of global artistic practices in Nairobi, these cities allow us to engage in rich and timely conversations. Through placed-based grantmaking our intention is to support not just the arts of these regions, but a more just world that encompasses the needs within these vibrant communities.

Michelle Coffey, Executive Director

Fund History

Lambent emerged from the past philanthropic work of Starry Night Fund that was founded in 2002 as a donor advised fund. Since 2002, we have invested in diverse social justice endeavors across the globe, providing grants to arts and culture, women and girls, racial justice, human rights and progressive movement building. Lambent Foundation became a project of the Tides Center in January of 2009.

Through the Lambent Fellowship in the Arts (2003 to 2005) thirty-one New York artists were awarded a three-year $21,000 unrestricted scholarship. We supported the following artists creative expression specifically fostering the intersection between art and social change.

2003: Elana Herzog, Nicolas Dumit Estevez, Deborah Grant, Ken Nintzel, Mary Ting

2004: Yoko Inoue, Emily Jacir, John Jasperse, Bradley McCallum & Jacqueline Tarry, Jeff Sonhouse, Cathy Weis

2005: Sanford Biggers, Patty Chang, Yvonne Meier, Julie Atlas Muz, Sekou Sundiata, Javier Tellez

2006: Francisca Benitez, Miguel Gutierrez, Lynn Jadamec, RoseAnne Spradlin, Judi Werthein, Ricardo Miranda Zúñiga

2007: Nao Bustamante, Skowmon Hastanan, Rajkamal Kahlon, Ivan Monforte, Jennifer Monson, Clifford Owens, Caledonia ‘Swoon’ Curry

©2011 Lambent Foundation. 
A project of the Tides Center. 
Photo Credits. Site by CivicActions.