Tag Archives : community

Valuing Labor in the Arts: Caroline Woolard

The work I’m doing now (by facilitating the start of associations http://bfamfaphd.com and http://nyctbd.com/resources) is focused on creating longterm community livelihoods where shared decision-making and shared profit are possible. Personally, I was able to focus on OurGoods.org and TradeSchool.coop and SolidarityNYC.org for the past five years because I graduated without debt from Cooper Union, because I refused to go into debt for graduate school, and because I created a job for myself by co-managing a studio space that I built out with friends to keep rent low.

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Reimagining the Urban: Alex Werth

One of the themes that we’re exploring in our seminar—entitled “The City, Arts, and Public Spaces,” and planned in conjunction with Reimagining the Urban—is that of publics and publicness. (See Shannon Jackson’s post for an overview of these many-sided concepts.) As a budding geographer, and a scholar of urban public space, I began the semester with the view that public space is public in the sense that it is, in theory, open to universal use, and that, to that effect, it is also a space in the sense that it is inhabitable.

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Reimagining the Urban: Marina McDougall

Several years ago at a public forum at the Oakland Museum of California, Open Restaurantcollaborator Jerome Waag asked, “How does a museum become an incubator generating new forms of civic engagement?”

Though no one that evening took it up, the question continues to resonate. The Oakland Museum soon after its founding in 1969 was hailed as “the people’s museum.” (I worked on a project called the Marvelous Museum with artist Mark Dion that delved into the OMCA’s early formation). Similarly, the Exploratorium also opened in 1969 with a wooden sign hung in its enormous space capturing its vision, “Here is being created the Exploratorium, a community museum dedicated to awareness.”

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Reimagining the Urban: Rebecca Novick

That’s Not My BART Stop: One of the Triangle Lab projects we’re producing right now is called Love Balm for My Spirit Child. It’s a series of performances sharing testimony from mothers who have lost children to violence. We’re calling this series “site-specific” because they’re performed on the spots where each murder took place. Site-specific in its strictest definition means a performance created specifically for a non-traditional space, often using physical characteristics of that space, or of the community who gathers there, to influence what the performance will be. In a more general or lazy way, we often use “site-specific” to simply mean “not performed in a theater.”

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ART/CITY: Susan Medak

“In relation to the arts and civic life, the question I am wrestling with right now is…” what is the future of ‘place based’ arts when the concept of community is being to radically redefined. So much artistic creation has, historically, been informed by a specific location, a relationship with a specific geographic community, and a very real sense of presence and live engagement.

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ART/CITY: Kathleen Reinhardt

In relation to the arts and civic life, the question I am wrestling with right now is… how engagement-based practices through an anchoring of the artist in the community and space-making through art can occur and why. I am focusing on several projects by black artists (Wangechi Mutu, Edgar Archeneaux, Rick Lowe, Theaster Gates) committed to creating sustainable cultural moments, and how these cultural moments can be of importance not only for the community they are created in, but also for an art audience.

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ART/CITY: Sue Bell Yank

In relation to the arts and civic life, the question I am wrestling with right now is whether it’s possible for arts organizations and artists to willfully create the conditions for long-term civic redevelopment and permanent social change on a large scale. I have recently participated as an advisor and evaluator for projects of differently-sized ambitions, primarily focusing on neighborhood revitalization through the arts – Watts House Project in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles, The Asian Arts Initiative in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, and the UCLA CityLAB visioning project in Westwood, Los Angeles.

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Occupy as Form: Catherine Ming T’ien Duffly

For those of us engaged in community-based art practice (via scholarship and/or via practice), what does the occupy movement have to offer our understanding of the term “community?” Miranda Joseph’s theorizing of community has asked us to think carefully about our tendency to hold up “community” as always and only a liberatory category. Other scholars have joined Joseph in questioning the use of “community” as an organizing concept for certain modes of socially engaged theater, performance, and art practice.’

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Understanding Market Street, by Will Thacher

Market Street was once a glamorous destination for the western world, boasting of such landmarks as the Palace Hotel, the most expensive and luxurious hotel of its time, the Chronicle building’s clock, the largest ever built, the Call building- one of the tallest in the world, and City Hall, a splendid monument to the city. People came to Market Street for shopping, entertainment and business. Laid out circa 1847 by Jasper O’Farrell, it runs 3 miles from the Ferry Building to Twin Peaks and has been compared to Fifth Avenue, the Champs-Élysées, or the Great White Way.

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