The Arts bring life to our communities. They sparks joy. they teach. They connect. They ask us to see things differently. But so often when the arts are used in community engagement activities it feels like an add-on, a sidebar. So how can the arts be integrated as the main event? What barriers or myths do we need to break down? Do we truly understand the benefits of an arts-based approach in order to advocate for it?
We heard from two artists, Hiba Abdallah and Chris Pandolfi, who specialize in community-engaged art, who shared inspiring examples from their practice exploring:
What do arts-based practices offer that is unique from traditional community engagement?
What are the barriers? What is needed to expand arts-based engagement practices
What advice do you have for community changemakers who want to integrate the arts with changemaking?
Note: This document was published in 2021 and uses the word stakeholder to reference the different parties connected to the outcomes of a situation or decision.
Since using the term, we as an organization have learned more about the origins of this word and its original uses. We want to acknowledge this history and communicate our desire to change which we are still developing as an organization.