The Gen Art organization is in danger of having to close its doors as early as this summer. The Gotham-based fashion and arts group, which has hosted the Gen Art film festival for the past 15 years, will hold a fundraiser June 24 in an effort to encourage individual donors to replace some of the wealth gone from its coffers after last year’s stock market crash.
“As a company, we were very reliant on corporate dollars — they were about 80% of our revenue last year,” said founder/CEO Ian Gerard. “We were probably not as diverse in that as we could have been; a lot of our partners were financial sectors and auto companies that were supposed to be blue-chip.”
Gen Art finds itself in a growing club of charitable orgs foundering due to a widespread donation drought, and like many others, it isn’t used to having to scrape for funds.
“We haven’t had to have a benefit in 10 years,” Gerard said.
When money from the company’s corporate accounts flowed, it was plentiful, but now Gerard and his staff are looking to one of the other principal sources of revenue for nonprofits: private wealth.
“We’re going out to individual donors, which we hadn’t done before,” Gerard said. “We’re making a plea directly to individuals to step it up in the moment of need.”
Helping Gerard and his staff articulate that plea will be William H. Macy, Adrien Brody, and Alan Cumming — all alumni of the film fest.