Citizenship and the Arts

Stories of artists and arts organizations using their unique capacities as citizens to advance broader civic agendas, including social justice, civic vitality, and social innovation.

Featuring three dynamic leaders in the field, these 12-minute talks explored the outputs and impacts of innovative projects across the country. An in-depth discussion followed and discussion among Virtual Summit participants took place simultaneously via #ArtsFwd on Twitter. These Talks stream in the following order.

Finding Your Itch and Scratching It
Howard Shalwitz, Artistic Director, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

Drawing on his perspective as a theatre founder, Howard Shalwitz will explore how an organization’s founding motivations and culture can play out over time to encourage innovation. More specifically, he will describe the evolution of Woolly Mammoth’s recent “Connectivity” strategy as a current example of “scratching the same itch” that the theatre began scratching 35 years ago.

Artist-led Ecosystem Interventions
Lisa Hoffman, Director of Environmental Program and Community Engagement, McColl Center for Visual Art

Explore with us a community engagement model that highlights the value of artist-led ecosystem interventions that foster inter-generational relationships, create stronger communities and elevate the value of artists as catalysts for change.

Small Town, Big Vision
John Davis, Executive Director, Lanesboro Arts Center

Lanesboro Arts Center is reimagining the future of rural America and the role that the arts can play in its sustainability by transforming an entire small town into an arts campus. This talk will explore the political, economic, and creative problem solving strategies of this innovative vision.

Fishbowl Discussion

After the three Talks concluded, on-site Summit participants in Denver — as well as online participants, who contributed questions and comments via the #ArtsFwd tag on Twitter — joined together for an informal, organically flowing fishbowl discussion about the theme of Citizenship and the Arts and other topics. The online participants’ voices were represented by the Talks moderator, Richard Demato.

All of these talks were livestreamed as part of the free Virtual Summit on Tuesday, October 22.