Recently by Esther Robinson, Founder, ArtHome

Doug's opening of question "Do artists even know what the priorities are?"  is an apt one and David is right to point out that folks are being "notified," but its important to be clear that notification is not the same as effective messaging or effective activism.

The bedrock of any good campaign is a clear sense of : WHAT/WHO/HOW.

WHAT change are we trying to advocate for?

WHO has a stake in the outcome of this advocacy work (individuals, institutions and coalitions)?

HOW will this change be brought about (what levers of power must be persuaded and how will we persuade them)?

I would argue that most people, artists included, have a hard time getting behind advocacy campaigns that are not clear about the what/who/how. For example, I think you would find a high participation in the Obama campaign by artists--because the stakes and the mechanisms were clearly articulated.

I would argue that artists are not involved in most cultural policy fights because

There is not any kind of consensus on WHAT change artists should be advocating for...

There is no clear articulation of what the stakes are, and thus WHO has a stake is unclear....

Because we don't know what we want, and who else wants it, we don't know HOW to effectively fight....

Arts advocacy groups need to create clarity of messaging--and then use the power of that clarity to create momentum building messaging, exciting coalitions and ACTION....

Brian's Drug, Nettrice's app, Tim's singing pest, Shepard Fairey's change poster, will only work with these pieces in place.

But course this assumes, like Bill mentioned, that we know who the arts advocacy groups are......Is perhaps artist's lack of participation equally an issue of ineffective representation?

July 19, 2010 1:03 PM | | Comments (1) |


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Recent Comments

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William Osborne commented on Training can be a place to start...: The general premise of this blog, that artists are not involved in activism...

Beth Janson commented on notification is not activism, it's notification: Esther, I absolutely agree with your points and think you've clearly articu...

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