Unlocking Arizona’s Creative Potential

This year, as the Arizona Commission on the Arts celebrates its 50th anniversary, we are proud to launch Next50, a visionary planning initiative designed to unleash the power of the arts in realizing Arizona’s brightest future.

Through innovative programs, strategic investment, exploration and convenings, Next50 will empower communities to activate creative assets and co-create ideas to fuel Arizona’s next 50 years.

Next50 activities put you at the center, focusing on…

  • LISTENING to your stories, your triumphs and aspirations;
  • LEARNING about your unique talents, and your community’s challenges and opportunities; and
  • LEVERAGING – lending our creative and collaborative skills to help Arizonans, and Arizona communities, achieve their most significant goals.

Arizona’s Next50 begins today. Let’s create it together.

This area of the website will become home to invitations and information related to Next50 community programming, research, and grantmaking, to result in innovative creative activities and products, intra- and cross-sector partnerships, publications, policy papers, interactive online tools, and an agency plan.

Visit this page for news and updates.

Next50 begins with you – your voice, your values, and your imagination. You live and learn and work here. You make things happen. You build, explore, and innovate. In so many ways, you are a creative Arizonan.

So we want to know: what, or where, is your creative spark?

Your stories, talent, and dreams drive the Next50 initiative. We want to learn from and with you. Your Creative Spark submissions help us to better understand your perspectives and aspirations, and consider changes to our service in response.

Below are just a few submissions we’ve already received. We hope you’ll share yours!


Jason Hugger

“Painting for me is an exploration of time, perspective and light which allows me to enter into a space of my own creation. I enjoy these places as if I were visiting in person and it is my hope the viewer also feels this.”



Sedona Arts Center’s Founders

“Sedona Arts Center’s founders gathered at our original location, the Art Barn, still home to our main programs, classes, lectures, cultural events, and staff: celebrating 60 years as one of Arizona’s most interesting and creative small town arts organizations…”


“She Moved Through the Fair” by Laura Strickland and Alex Mack

“The song has a haunting melody with lyrics that tell the story of a man and the woman he hopes to marry. Unfortunately, he ends up disappointed. Although it was originally written for voice, we believe the flute and guitar capture the melancholic beauty of the song. We present this to audiences to show how the music and stories of the past can still be relevant today.”

View all submissions »