Blog Posts for cultural equity

What's Possible in America: Dread Scott, More Art, and the Impossibility of Freedom

Posted by Audra Lambert, Aug 26, 2015 0 comments

The thing I remember most about the start of the performance was the deafening sound of silence.

That was the first unexpected moment during artist and activist Dread Scott’s performance piece with More Art. The crowd pressed forward in anticipation as Scott turned a corner and prepared to advance. The firefighters, prepared to unleash a stream of water against Scott equivalent to a crowd control hose, were at the ready. And the world held its breath.

 

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Where the Cultural Life Flowers, the Community as a Whole Prospers and Grows

Posted by Mr. Clayton W. Lord, Aug 17, 2015 0 comments

What makes a “healthy, vibrant, equitable community” healthy, vibrant, or equitable? As time marches on, what challenges will be presented to that community—to the millions of different communities that exist and overlap in every part of our lives? And how can the arts be a part of pushing past those challenges, empowering change, and creating a brighter future?

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What We Talk About When We Talk About Transforming the Field

Posted by Jason Tseng, Aug 07, 2015 0 comments

“To fundamentally transform the field in order to meet a fundamentally changing nation and time, we need to fundamentally change who is in the field ”

This was the prompt I was given, earlier this year, when I was asked to speak at the Americans for the Arts Convention. It so happens that I spend a lot of time thinking about transforming the arts and culture field; on the account of the fact that I work for Fractured Atlas, a nonprofit technology organization that helps artists with the business side of the creative work, where transforming the status quo of the field is part and parcel of everything that we do.

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Privilege, Access, and the Arts

Posted by Adil Mansoor, Jul 22, 2015 0 comments

This past June, I had the opportunity to present at the first Cultural Equity Preconference at the 2015 American for the Arts (AFTA) gathering in Chicago, IL. Over 100 people spent three rigorous days thinking about art, diversity, and their own communities. Each presentation created space for me to consider, reflect, and question. From chats over lunch about gay zombie theater to bus rides investigating the urgent need to include dialogue about ability and accessibility in social justice movements, every interaction was steeped in expansive conversations.

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Follow up on Americans for the Arts' Annual Convention

Posted by Ms. Ann Marie Miller, Jun 23, 2015 0 comments

The 2015 Americans for the Arts’ Annual Convention was also my first visit to Chicago. Having arrived early, I heard that the Chicago Architecture Foundation offered outstanding tours. I arranged to join the “Must See Chicago,” tour and was not disappointed. My inner geek enjoyed learning about Daniel Burnham, bundled tube construction, and remembering the contributions to mid-century modern architecture of Mies van der Rohe from art history class. While I spent a considerable amount of time “looking up” at numerous behemoth skyscrapers, I was grounded by a treasure trove of public art. It felt like opening a new box of crayons-truly inspirational. That was only the beginning of my #AFTACON inspiration.

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Some Expressions about the Arts and Creative Expression

Posted by Charles Jensen, Jun 23, 2015 2 comments

I was thrilled to sit in on the “Vocabulary for Arts and Arts Education” session at Americans for the Arts' Annual Convention this year. All three presenters—Christopher Audain, Kevin Kirkpatrick, and Margy Waller, along with moderator Margie Reese—were all on point for the session and I perhaps overtweeted in my enthusiasm over what they shared.

As I left the session, I started focusing on what Kevin presented on changing the conversation about arts and culture. Arts Midwest recently released the study Creating Connection: Research Findings and Proposed Message Framework to Build Public Will for Arts and Culture, which examined how existing attitudes and values of our audiences connect with our field’s message output. The study suggests reframing arts activity to be “creative expression” will have a more effective connection to broader audiences, and that connecting with others, with their families, and with their inner selves is their largest motivation for participating in arts and culture.

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