Happy National Arts & Humanities AND Jersey Arts Month!
Every October, in honor of National Arts & Humanities Month, Americans for the Arts partners with arts and community leaders from across the country to host Creative Conversations, local gatherings of engaged citizens in communities as part of a grassroots movement to elevate the profile of arts in America. This local tool empowers arts administrators to take a leadership role in their own community by both designing programming and galvanizing their peers to connect professionally.
Now, we all know that the best parts of conferences are often the coffee breaks, right? Those personal, one-on-one moments of intimate conversation about philosophies, beliefs and tried-and-true best practices are where the magic happens, right? In an effort to capture that magic, the New Jersey Emerging Arts Leaders hosted its fifth annual Creative Conversations on Saturday October 19, in partnership with Rider University's Arts Administration Program and Creative New Jersey, with HowlRound live streaming and archiving the event as well. Creative New Jersey has embraced the Open Space Technology model as a tool for championing creativity, innovation and sustainability through community engagement and cross-sector collaboration. In an Open Space Convening, there are no experts, no speakers and no pre-set agenda. The people who care enough to be involved and who are passionate about the topic are the experts and set the agenda of the day. Break-out sessions are the beginning of an in-depth journey, where relationships are strengthened and plans of action are developed. At the end of each session, while all of the thoughts are still fresh, the notes are transcribed so that everyone can return to that moment, review the discussions and renew their passion So, of course, this model seemed the perfect fit for NJEAL Creative Conversations 2013!
We asked, "How can we, as emerging arts leaders, drive innovation and create sustainable opportunities for ourselves that will enable us to grow, to nurture vibrant relationships, and to inspire our communities?" The Big Question led to break-outs about Marketing, International Cooperation, Nurturing Your Inner Artist, The Necessity of Art and much more. Please visit NJEAL 2013 Creative Conversations Google Drive to explore the post session notes and reviews. With a diverse group of nearly 40 participants, representing arts organizations, community service groups, downtown and destination marketing organizations as well as individual artists, each session was dynamic, exciting and inspiring.
And now, the hard work begins. We now need to reflect on the Creative Conversations of the day, develop our plans to move forward and sustain the relationships we all discovered.
The New Jersey Emerging Arts Leaders would like to thank everyone who came out to converse with us, and we hope we can continue to build bridges between our regions and our organizations while encouraging emerging artists and administrators in their careers.
And if these folks sound like your kind of folks, the ones that you’d like to network and collaborate with, be sure to complete our membership application to receive all of our latest information and up-coming event announcements!