An altar created by local community members from Casa de los Soles on view at 9th and Ellsworth Streets, part of a Dia de los Muertos celebration presented by Fleisher Art Memorial and Calaca Flaca. Photo by Gustavo Garcia.
Fleisher Art Memorial is a community arts organization that provides access to tuition-free or low-cost classes and workshops for over 20,000 children and adults annually. Fleisher was founded in 1898 by textiles mogul Samuel S. Fleisher, who believed in empowering the individual to build a stronger community. The organization's Community Partnerships in the Arts (CPA) program brings creative art-making experiences to children and youth in public schools and community after-school programs, while its FAMbassadors program connects grassroots community advisors with community members to deepen relationships and develop new approaches to outreach efforts through art. Center funding in 2013 supported an initiative to extend Fleisher's reach to surrounding immigrant communities, allowing the organization to engage more diverse audiences and serve the neighborhood in which it resides. In 2016, Fleisher received Center support for Bring Your Own Project, a creative "place-keeping" project that will put Fleisher's spaces and resources into the hands of Southeast Philadelphia community members through artistic residency partnerships with Casa de los Soles and VietLEAD. In 2020, Fleisher received a Center Project grant for 360 Culture Lab, an arts incubator that will create opportunities to preserve and share Indonesian and Venezuelan cultural life and traditions through collaborations with South Philadelphia’s growing immigrant communities and newly arrived residents.