Drive the arts. Buy the plate.

  • Million Plates Drive! Art's Plate

    The Million Plates Drive is a public/private partnership to restore funding for the arts in California through sales of the California Arts Plate.

    The Arts Plate is the primary source of California's public arts funding. Our goal is one million Arts Plates on the road will generate $40 million annually for arts education and local arts programs for children, schools and communities - in every county across the entire state.

    Join the drive to inspire future generations of Californians with the creativity, imagination and innovation that are key to success in every field...

    And sign up for Million Plates Drive Updates so we can keep you updated on the campaign!

    Arts Photos
  • Plate History

    "Create a State" and
    the Million Plates Drive

    The "Create a State" campaign - conceived, designed and produced by Los Angeles-based ad agency Industrial Creative - directly links arts education to creativity, innovation and success in every field. Billboards, a voucher card program, online initiatives, social networking campaigns and more work together to promote the vital role of the arts in California education, elevate awareness of the Arts Plate and and inspire California drivers to get one million California Arts Plates on the road.

    The "Create a State Campaign" is the marketing campaign fueling the Million Plates Drive, a massive statewide public/private fundraising effort to raise $40 million annually for the California Arts Council's arts education and local arts programs through the sale of one million Arts Plates.

    Iconic cultural, business and civic leaders are joining the Million Plates Drive as "Arts Drivers" to represent how creativity plays a vital role for success in a variety of careers. By participating in the "Create a State" campaign, they are helping to ensure that California's innovative companies and creative workforce continue to be the envy of the world for generations to come.

    CURRENT ARTS DRIVERS (In alphabetical order):

    • Debbie Allen
    • Herb Alpert
    • Annette Bening
    • Jack Black
    • Eli Broad
    • Father Greg Boyle
    • Vernon Davis
    • Placido Domingo
    • The Edge
    • Harrison Ford
    • David Geffen
    • Frank Gehry
    • Cast of "Glee"
    • Macy Gray
    • Quincy Jones
    • Steve Martin
    • Ozomatli
    • Wolfgang Puck
    • Robert Redford
    • Tim Robbins
    • Ed Ruscha
    • Maria Shriver
    • Russell Simmons
    • Alice Waters


    Over 60 percent of the California Arts Council's budget already comes from sales and renewals of the Arts Plate – funding that directly supports and sustains arts education and arts programs for kids and communities all across the state.

    The California Arts Plate was created through special legislation in 1994. It is a joint project between the California Arts Council and the Department of Motor Vehicles and was the first specialty plate program in the U.S. designed solely to benefit the arts. The plate image is titled "Coastline" and was created by renowned California artist Wayne Thiebaud in 1993. Since then the iconic image has become famous worldwide, and sales and renewals of the plate have provided millions of dollars to support arts programs in California.

    By purchasing the Arts Plate, you are joining the drive to generate $40 million annually for arts education programs in California. The Million Plates Drive will create a state of innovation and ensure that California continues to be the envy of the world in creative and innovative fields for generations to come.

  • Arts Plate!

    California needs innovation.
    Innovation needs the arts.

    Exposure to and training in the arts cultivate the creativity and innovation that are key to success in every field…and California needs big thinkers more than ever.

    The arts contribute to California's economy in a very direct way:

    • 2X - More film and entertainment-related jobs in California than any other state in the country.
    • 680,000+ - Full and part-time creative jobs, many in high-growth fields.
    • $201.1 billion - total 2010 estimated economic impact of the creative economy in Los Angeles and Orange Counties alone.

    The economy of this great state depends on creativity, imagination and innovation, yet California is not investing in the creative future of our state:

    • 49 - California's rank among the 50 states in per capita arts spending (California moved up from "dead last" when Kansas eliminated its arts budget in 2011).
    • Texas and Mississippi - The only two states with a higher dropout rate than California. Studies are beginning to show that exposure to arts education reduces dropout rates.
    • 89% - of California's K-12 schools fail to provide arts education in the recommended four disciplines of music, dance, theater, and visual arts.

    Help us ensure that California continues to be known for its innovative companies and creative workforce for years to come: join the Million Plates Drive today!

    Arts Plate
  • Perks

    The PERKS program is still under development, check back frequently or sign-up for our newsletter below and we will notify you once the PERKS program has launched and keep you updated as we add benefits to the PERKS program.

    Keep current with the Million Plates Drive and the status of the PERKS program, join our newsletter by inputting your e-mail below and click join:


    Artist Wayne Thiebaud

    This pop artist contemporary of Andy Warhol is famous for his still life images of food, especially sweets, painted in bright pastels with thick strokes. A 2001 issue of Time dedicated to the Western states called Thiebaud "The Poet of Pastry," saying that "Wayne Thiebaud offers deep pleasures in the everyday, from pies and cakes to slices of landscapes."

    THIEBAUD Thiebaud moved to California at a young age and is often considered California's artistic native son. He started as a commercial artist after attending Long Beach Polytechnic High School, working briefly at Walt Disney Studios, studying commercial art at the Frank Wiggins School in Los Angeles, and working as a cartoonist in Long Beach in the 1930s. After World War II he attended San Jose State College and Cal State Sacramento for an advanced degree in art, and then gained national recognition in the 1960s with his still-life images of food. He has taught in numerous California institutions, especially a long stint at University of California at Davis where he is currently a professor emeritus.


  • Sony Pictures is a sponsor of the "Create a State" launch event.
  • Ovation is a sponsor of the "Create a State" launch event.
  • Wolfgang Puck Catering is a sponsor of the "Create a State" launch event.
  • Susan Steinhauser & Daniel Goldberg are sponsors of the "Create a State" launch event.
  • Topps Digital Services is the online sponsor of the "Create a State" campaign.
  • ClearChannel has donated outdoor media for the "Create a State" campaign.
  • Industrial Creative created and produced the "Create a State" campaign.
  • AstraPacific is driving a double decker bus with "Create a State" artwork around LA, and bought Arts Plates for their entire City Safari Bus Tours fleet!