Construction plans were set in motion this past December when the Culver City City Council unanimously approved the Wende Museum’s proposal for a Creative Community Center at 10858 Culver Boulevard. The phased construction of the Center will also include 100% affordable housing for international and local artists facilitated in partnership with the New York-based Artistic Freedom Initiative.

The decision by the City Council was led by Culver City Mayor Dr. Daniel Lee, who shared that “the creation of the Wende’s Creative Community Center—in conjunction with its partner organizations—signals Culver City’s commitment to ensuring access and engagement for all. Further, the eventual completion of this project will include much-needed affordable housing for international and local artists right here in our own community.”

Culver City-based nonprofit organizations including the Wende Museum, the Mayme A. Clayton Library and Museum, United States Veterans’ Artist Alliance, Upward Bound House, and the Artistic Freedom Initiative will activate this first-of-its-kind center, which will combine cultural and educational programming.

Designed by AUX Architecture, the Center will be a 7,000-square-foot mixed-use space for culture, education, tutoring, and social services provided by the participating organizations. It will incorporate a theater for live performance, a demonstration garden, art space for veterans, housing for artists, and a dedicated place for students of the Culver City Unified School District.

The proposal was guided by the vision of Glorya Kaufman, a legendary patron of the performing arts in Los Angeles whose foundation will also underwrite the capital project. Outreach included a number of public forums hosted by the Wende Museum, an open house, and a series of smaller meetings and discussions with neighbors, nonprofit leaders, and people across Culver City’s communities.

All programs will be provided to the community free of charge, thanks to generous support of the Glorya Kaufman Foundation. Kaufman’s philanthropy has transformed communities throughout Southern California, empowering vital organizations, such as Inner-City Arts, Mar Vista Family Center, and Vista del Mar Child and Family Services, and educating the next generation of dance artists through the USC Kaufman School of Dance. Her support of the Creative Community Center will have a ripple effect across generations. The Wende Museum and AUX Architecture will continue working side-by-side with Culver City officials through the construction phases of this fully funded, cooperative initiative. Construction is planned to commence in July 2022, and the Center is projected to open to the community in 2023. Learn more about The Wende Museum here.