Robert Lalasz’s “MAC Daddy” (1/31) offered an intriguing look at the little-known events surrounding the creation of the Millennium Arts Center in Southwest D.C. However, the article missed one key point: A great deal of public good has come from the nonprofit programs that make the Millennium Arts Center their home, and decision makers pondering the fate of the MAC must take these programs and the people they serve into account.
One of these organizations is Art Enables. Art Enables provides mentally and developmentally disabled adult artists studio space, guidance, materials, and the opportunity to show and sell their work. The program is one of the most creative alternatives in day programming for people with developmental disabilities to have been launched in the region in recent years.
MAC’s central location and Metro accessibility are critical to making Art Enables accessible to its participants. The center’s low cost has also been a key element in Art Enables’ success.
Any radical change in MAC will have a major impact on all the nonprofit programs that make it their home, as well as on the artists in the building. Policymakers and stakeholders involved in deciding the fate of MAC must take this into account while pondering the fate of the center. The contributions to the public good of Art Enables and its sister nonprofits in the MAC are undeniable and must be factored into any answer to the questions surrounding the future of the Millennium Arts Center.
The Board of Directors of Art Enables