The cultural landscape in Haifa—and indeed, in Israel—will have looked very different without Haifa Arts Foundation
Haifa Arts Foundation, established in 1976 by Haifa municipality, the Ministry of Education and Culture in Israel and the Senate of the Free City of Bremen, Germany, is active in promoting art and culture in the city. It supports cultural and artistic projects in the fields of theater, literature, cinema and visual arts, and grants scholarships to outstanding students in the fields of dance and music. The Foundation helps artists to publicize and promote their work, putting emphasis on projects that will not have been realized without its help and involvement.
The Foundation supports artists of all ages—teenagers, adults and seniors—and from all sectors of Haifa's population—Jews, Arabs, Druze, Christians and Muslims, secular and religious, and contributes, in addition, to disabled populations. HAF dedicates a portion of its resources to education, and creates shared projects for special education students and students in regular schools.
Haifa Arts Foundation contributes to the promotion of young and adult talents in various areas of music, the most prominent of which are students from Haifa's conservatories. The Foundation helps individuals, bands, choirs, associations, music schools, and community projects through grants, and through ongoing support to musical groups or one-time support for specific projects. Over the years, hundreds of pupils benefited from these grants.
Choreographers and dancers in the fields of classical, modern and folk dance, such as the Beta Dance Troupe, Sigma Ensemble and the Haifa Contemporary Dance Workshop, received support that enabled them to continue with ongoing activities and to produce projects.
Assistance in publication of literary works was the largest domain of personal scholarships granted by HAF. Over the years, it awarded grants to novelists, writers, poets and playwrights from Haifa, old and young.
Haifa Arts Foundation assisted in the publication of catalogs for exhibitions at museums and galleries of cultural institutions, such as the exhibition catalog New Woman Figure in Photography, and the catalog of Yosl Bergner's exhibition The Party, presented at the Haifa Museum of Art.
The Foundation also assisted in the publication of catalogs for exhibitions produced by Beit Hagefen Arab-Jewish Cultural Center during over 20 years of Holiday of Holidays Festivals, of exhibitions presented in the Beit Hagefen Gallery and the Museum without Walls—in the open public space in Wadi Nisnas and its vicinity.
Haifa Arts Foundation supports the International film festival in Haifa since its first day. The Foundation awards the prize for the first place winner in the Israeli Feature Film Competition, and in recent years provided additional grants in other categories of Israeli films.
Outside the Festival, the Foundation supported—by way of grants—short feature and documentary films of Haifa moviemakers, as well as movies whose plot takes place in Haifa or filmed in Haifa.
HAF supports the International Children's Theater Festival since its inception. The Foundation helped various productions and projects and gave awards to artists in different categories: playwrights, directors, actors, set designers, costume designers, lighting, incidental music and more. In recent years, the Foundation awarded the first prize to winners at the Best Children Play category, and bought tickets for underprivileged children.