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The new year and our new cultural strategic assignment kick started with a seminar at Vara Concert Hall, focused on the topic of streamed culture, last Thursday. The Swedish government has marked digitalization as an important way for culture to reach a wider audience (read here). Vara Concert Hall celebrates their 10th anniversary this fall and together with Nätverkstan they are now in the process of implementing technology and procedures to start live streaming their events. Their aim is completely in line with the thoughts from the Swedish government – especially to reach people not able to come to the cultural events, in places such as prisons, homes for the old and hospitals.
The first action in our mutual project was to identify and invite the most prominent organizations in the field to a hearing. Our aim has always been to support the small and independent organizations and we are glad that Vara Concert Hall shares this belief. Together, we also believe that sharing knowledge and solutions strengthens the efforts made, and that this is especially true in the complex field of digitalizations where new technology is introduced almost on a daily basis. The procurement of digital services is an intricate matter and smaller organizations often make mistakes in the process – which in turn means that tax money is wrongly spent on expensive and short lived solutions.
The keynote speakers were Urban Ward from Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, Ulrik Flood from Digital Live Arena, Peo Thyrén from STIMand Johannes Nebel from Play Kultur. In the audience were representatives from the Swedish Arts Council, Kultur i Väst, Kultursekretariatet i Västra Götaland as well as people from cinemas and smaller cultural organizations. Moderator for the hearing (and project manager for Vara Live Stream) was Leif Eriksson from Nätverkstan.
Magnus Lemark from the Swedish Arts Council remarked that this hearing is a running start for them, as they have just been handed the assignment from the Swedish Government, to help the Swedish cultural sector over the digital threshold. And Johannes Nebel agreed that this kind of meetings to share knowledge is the best way to get knowledge and tackle new complex investments. He also said that the main problem for digital material is distribution, and that Sweden lacks the kind of marketplaces that focus solely on culture. Play Kultur was started with exactly this in mind, to become the first portal for live streamed and archived material on performing arts.
We hope that Johannes last words from the hearing gives echo and they will certainly work inspiring for our own efforts: ”Västra Götaland now has the chance to be the first region in Sweden to show how coordination of digital efforts works.”
Our cooperation with Vara Concert Hall continues, and knowledge produced within the project will be made public in a conference later this fall. But we are also open to smaller hearings in the region and we especially look forward to the 20th of May, when GSO and Play Kultur are hosting a seminar in Gothenburg. Cooperation makes us stronger!
By Carl Forsberg, Head of Medialab and Technique at Nätverkstan
The well-known Italian economist Pier Luigi Sacco did something interesting when he visited Sweden last November, invited by Kulturmiljö Halland. He put two different ranking tables next to each other; one ranking the level of innovation in a country, the other active participation in amateur artistic activities.
When these two tables came next to each other, a relationship between the two could be discovered. It looked like there might be a correlation between cultural participation and capacity of innovation in a country. This can’t, according to Pier Luigi Sacco, be a coincidence.
For Sweden, it’s great news. Sweden lies in top of both tables. If Sacco’s argument is right, it looks like there is a connection between the local municipality-led music schools for all children, something you find in almost all Swedish communities, and the level of innovation in the country.
Listening to the presentations at the conference Kompetensebehov for framtidens kulturutviklere (my translation: Competence need for future cultural developers), these correlations come to mind. I have together with around ninety developers, strategists, civil servants and practitioners within culture come to Gamle Logen in Oslo to listen to and discuss the competence need for future cultural developers.
The main focus of the conference, financed and organized by Norsk Kulturforum and Nordisk Ministerråd, is children and youngsters and how culture is a pedagogical tool in schools. In Sweden and Norway culture in schools have a specific focus in cultural policy; in Sweden through what is called Skapande skola, and in Norway through Den kulturelle skolesecken. In Finland basic arteducation in schools is the norm and stated in the law since 1999.
Projects like Fargespill in Bergen (Norway), Den mangfoldige scenen in Oslo (Norway), and work in Sunnadalsskolan and Marinmuseum in Karlskrona (Sweden) are all examples of how working with culture as a pedagogic tool in schools can be done in a successful way.
The three projects are set in areas with high level of immigrant inhabitants and one message of the conference is that here lays an unseen competence and potential. The Nordic countries need to look at future competencies in new ways. The key factors of success the three projects address have been an inclusive approach to all children, a respectful attitude, and to see all individuals as resources. This will, then following Pier Luigi Sacco’s thought, also have effects on innovation.
Download the program of the conference here: forelobig-program_110511.pdf and the speakers here: presentasjon-av-foredragsholderne-med-konferansebilde.pdf.
It’s a busy time at the Design Management Program at Pratt Institute in New York and I have managed to grab the only whole in the calendar for a long time. Mary McBride, Director of the Program, take me past her office on the way to our meeting room, an office with the windows overlooking the busy 14th Street at Manhattan filled with around ninety applications for thirty places. All applicants are being processed and the majority interviewed. The attitude is to always to give people the benefit of the doubt.
Students are designers in organizations and businesses that would like to learn more about Design Management. They come in with experience and can use the knowledge directly in their organization.
In a world struggling with significant social and ecological challenges, a new economic paradigm – shaped by innovative design thinking – must transform business strategies and tactics.
The words are Mary McBride’s in an article in Design Management Review (volume 22, number 1, 2011) where she puts forward the Triple Bottom Line model as a way of thinking. It proposes to advance the sustainability agenda and encourages simultaneous pursuit of economic value, social equity and ecosystem quality.
”Sustainability is the new quality,” she tells me and in the Design Management Program this perspective is integrated in all courses. She talks about strategy and strategic thinking rather than using ecological terminology, which suggests an out-of-the-box thinking and a process starting with a company’s goal and mission all the way to realization, distribution, and customers.
Radical innovation, she says, is to go to the root of a business’ mission and start an innovation process. The problem is rarely innovation in it-self, but the diffusion of innovation.
To manage this profound change in companies’ values and attitude and the ”ecology of decision-making”, creators are needed. Businesses usually don’t like surprises, while creators are thrilled by the unexpected.
Two reflections come to mind as I leave the meeting: The strong commitment to sustainability as a life matter for all parts of society in business, economical as well as social, and the belief that creators play a key-role in this transformation.
Göteborg University is planning a one-year master on Art an Entrepreneurship. The idea is that students start in Göteborg and do part of the education in Bangalore, India. Hopefully the part in Bangalore would be Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology.
A base for the cooperation would be student exchange, where Indian students go to Sweden and the other way around. For Swedish students there are great opportunities in learning a completely different environment, spend a longer time in a different context to get input about Art and entrepreneurship by mixing the theoretical with social practice.
Gunilla Bursteadt and Leif Eriksson from Film School of Directing in Göteborg are discussing film education in Bangalore with Prakash Belawadi, filmmaker, and N Vidyashankar, Suchitra Cinema & Cultural Academy. What should an education look like with the aim of educating independent filmmakers in the Indian context? How do you secure a multi-level and cross-cultural approach in education?
The visit is part of the exchange between Karnataka, India, and Region Västra Götaland, Sweden that started in 2007.
Expectations were high when we started the workshop on ”The Art of living on Art” with visual artists, theatre people, a writer and dancers and choreographers in Nairobi, Kenya. How do I do to be able to do what I like most? How do you as an Artist to balance the business and the artistic side? How do you find ways to sustain your artistic work? How can you find the missing link between production and the market? Open a window to see new things?
We start quite frankly. We don’t have any answers. There are not any quick fixes you can follow that will solve all the obstacles or solve how to live on Art. You have the answers yourself. What we do is putting up the room for reflection and a structured way to reflect and think of where you are, your obstacles, how to get past these, your future ideas, how to deal with changes.
Eleven professionals within the Artistic field gathered to go through this process for two intense days. It’s interesting to see that Artist from different contexts as Sweden, Turkey, Georgia, India and Kenya have so much in common. The obstacles, difficulties and challenges put forward are very much the same, although the contexts are so different.
The workshop in Nairobi was organized by GoDown Art Center in cooperation with Nätverkstan. Read more about ”The Art of living on Art” under the catogeory with the same name.
Etiketter:Artist, Artistic practice, Business idea, Creative Industries, Creativity, Cultural economy, Cultural Project, Democracy, Development, Education, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, pedagogical, Self-employment, Social entrepreneur, Transformation
In 1999 Kulturverkstan, the two year Project Management Training Programme within culture started. The idea was to combine theoretical analysis with practical action plans, academic level with practice in the ”real world”, studies at Lagerhuset together with internships on organizations in cultural – or other – fields in Sweden or elsewhere. Lecturers from academia combined with festival managers, writers, philosophers, project managers, theatre directors, actors, film makers. And to work with students with all artistic expressions, to be cross-cultural. Thirty-five students each year have been accepted to Kulturverkstan after an extensive application process. Around three hundred students have examined and 85% have gotten jobs or started their own business after education. A number we are proud of.
On Saturday we celebrated Kulturverkstan 10 years with a big party and event at Röda Sten, a cultural house and exhibition hall by the channel in Göteborg. The Artist Lisa Nordström started the evening with her piece 7 States of Passion followed by Islandic writer and poet Andri Snær Magnason who talked about is award winning book ”Dreamland – a Self-Help Manual for a Frightened Nation” (2006) and the situation in Island after the financial crisis. Old students showed what they are working with, speeches, food and lots of dancing to the DJ:s captivating music the whole night long. The new cultural price in Göteborg, in memory of our late colleague Lars Lövheim was inaugurated.
A book on Kulturverkstan 10 years will be available soon (in Swedish)!
The summer academy ”The Art of living in Art” has come to an end after three intense workshop days at Stenebyskolan (School of Steneby) in Dalsland. Guest lecturer and workshop facilitator was Sian Prime, among many things MA at Goldsmiths University in UK.
The Artists taking part in the academy have been musicians, composers, visual artist, actresses, who have worked all summer on their action plans. They have in workshops in the beginning of summer visualized their future, looked at their skills, hinders and possibilities, money and meaning, what they put their time on, how to plan your actions differently to achieve what you want and so forth. They have had group meetings with a facilitator during summer, together with individual coaching sessions. And now, in Steneby, the final days of building relations in relationship modelling, working on their offer, discussing the literature they have read, drawing some conclusions. Everything in workshops, open discussions, talks two and two, and individual thinking and writing.
”Don’t stop look around you. Don’t stop caring. Don’t stop listening” is one of Sian Prime’s many interesting thoughts. There are three questions to keep constantly with you when thinking of what you offer as an artist and how this could interest others:
1) Why should I care?
2) Why should I trust you?
3) Why should I believe you?
You need to have your heart (1), guts (2), and head (3) with you when engaging with other professionals. Another thing is not to let money hinder you. You are not the only one not driven by money, Sian Prime explains, so are many others. ”Money is rarely the driver”, she says, you have to find out what drives those you want to work with and engage in building professional relationships. In the long run, this can build new ideas that you can live on, but you have to get started.
”Treat no as a question”, is another point. Always ask what the ”no” means. What does it stand for?
Nätverkstan runs the summer academy in cooperation with Göteborg University, Sian Prime, and the Västra Götaland. The Academy was the first of three summer academies. The experiences will also be put into the new Masters Programme at the University on Art and entrepreneurship that will be developed this year. Read this post on the start of the course.
In 1871 a big fire destroyed most of Chicago City. Three hundred people died, 100.000 became homeless (total inhabitants at the time was 300.000) and the material damage was devastating. Queen Victoria, Queen of Great Britain and Ireland at the time, felt, say the story, such compassion with the inhabitants of Chicago that she quickly decided to send a large box of books with the thought that all their literature must have gotten burnt up. What she didn’t know was that Chicago didn’t have a public library and hadn’t had one. With all these books arriving from across the ocean, something had to be done and the city quickly decided to build the first one.
The Swedish right-wing politician Valfrid Palmgren was a lady in forefront. She had a remarkable career and was, one of many things she achieved, 1905 the first female Amanuensis at the Royal Library in Stockholm. In 1907 she went on a long trip to USA to investigate the idea of public libraries for all. In USA libraries was seen as a civic right, placed in the center of cultural and educational politics. She was quite cultural conservative, it’s said, at the same time as she fought philanthropic values and saw it as her task to bring the idea of public libraries to Sweden. Literature should be accessible to everyone, and is a right beyond questions of class, was her idea and she hoped libraries could act to mitigate class differences. Libraries should not be led by politics, market or religious ideas. The librarians should therefore be people with education and expertise. Back in Sweden after her trip over the Atlantic, she within four years founded the first children and youth library in Sweden in 1911.
In Chicago, the city in 1991 built a ten floor high new public library on South State Street, this is, I am told, the world’s largest. True or not (there are many things we are told during the visit in Chicago are the biggest, widest, largest). Nevertheless, it’s an incredible building; the architecture is post-modern with reminders of old pompous eras, the collection of literature impressive with books, journals, magazines, audio for every taste.
Read the article written by Swedish cultural journalist Ingrid Elam in Dagens Nyheter of Valfrid Palmgren (in Swedish), published in June 2007 as a reflection concerning the then newly formed the Committee of Inquiry of Cultural Policy, with the task of revising Swedish cultural policy. You can also download it here: allmanna-bibliotek-en-borgerlig-ide-dn. Read posts on the Swedish Cultural Policy here, here and here. And libraries and entrepreneurship here.
Little Black Pearl, situated in Bronzeville south of Chicago, is a nonprofit organisation with ambition to create opportunities for young adults through Artistic and cultural work. In the Centre they can work in one of the many studios with wood, glass, painting, ceramics, run workshops or put up shows. Gwendolyn Pruitt, Director of Product Design, shows us around and tells us the story of this community based organisation with enthusiasm and passion. It’s both about what they achieve with the students, she shows an example of tables they did with beautiful mosiac cover on top, which they sell to customers. It can be anything. Their mission is to deepen the creative involvement through Arts, and learn how to run things. It’s also about the struggle of getting the budget to sum up in the end and the constant search for funding bodies, she tells us with a sigh. ”I found that I don’t have the time to teach them that personal component”, she tells us with referral to the young students. She finds it’s a great need to also teach teachers ”It’s a gap between the structure and the student”.
In 1974 a group of classmates at high school got together to set up a theatre play by Paul Zindel. Since they only had one semester left, it was not until they came to Illionis State University that the idea formed and they looked for a place to set it up. Their first production was played in a Church in Chicago, and since they at the time was reading the book ”Steppenwolf” by Herman Hesse, they named the theatre the Steppenwolf Theatre Company. Today the theatre is a prestigous one on Halsted Street, with the ambition of advancing the vitality and diversity of American Theatre .
We see the play ”Up” by Bridget Carpenter of the man who once reached the sky, the clouds, in a chair with balloons, and could not let go of the idea of doing it again. In another machine he would build. His vision held him alive, this was his passion, while everyday life and the reality of having to pay bills at the end of the month was taken care of by his wife. Until the situation changed and the pressure of supporting the family came closer. After the play there was an interesting discussion with the audience, reflections showing how differently we interpreted the play. The discussions at the conference of Artists and entrepreneurship become very real in this beautiful and sad play of having dreams and struggling with reality.
The Art Institute in Chicago is impressive in many ways, but mainly and mostly of two things. The collection of Art they have is impressive, to say the least. In this institute you can see everything from American contemporary Art to the Impressionists, African to Asian Art, photography and industrial design. You can stay days in there. Secondly it’s free for the public after five pm Thursdays and Fridays. The Institute and its collections are open and accessible for the public, something that seems in line with the attitude of giving Art and culture a central role in Chicago.
Etiketter:Artist, Artistic collective workshop, Artistic practice, Creative Industries, Creativity, Cultural economy, Cultural Policy, Cultural Project, Democracy, Development, Digitization, Economy, Education, Encatc, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, pedagogical, Resources, Social entrepreneur, USA
The summer academy ”The Art of living on Art” started this week and we just got back from three interesting days of work in Steneby, Dalsland. The academy is started by Göteborg University, Academy of Music and Drama, in cooperation with Nätverkstan, and turns to those who are, or aim to be, professional Artists. It’s about Art and entrepreneurship with a bearing thought that Artists know more about entrepreneurship than they (and others) believe they do. One of the aims is to make Artists aware of the competences and resources they have and catalyze these by reflection, discussions, good examples and guidance. It’s about taking power of your own lives. If you want to make a living on your Art – what do you need to do? What actions do you have to take? What hinders are there on the way?
There are no easy solutions or quick ways. On one hand report after report show that creative industries are a growing field, this is where you will find future jobs and new entrepreneurial ideas. At the same time other studies show that the income level among Artists is very low. So how do you do if you want to live of the income from your Art? The idea of the summer academy is to create a room for reflection and to start look at the resources you have; ideas, competences, skills; and to look at your network and relations. And ask yourself ”What do I lack or what is stopping me from doing what I want to do?”
The models used are workshops for self-reflection. The Artists have the competence; the teachers are putting up the framework and leading the process of reflection. Many of the workshop-themes and models have been done in cooperation with Sian Prime, who was one of those running the incubator Creative Pioneer Programme at Nesta in London a few years ago, an incubator specifically within the Artistic field.
Three intense, hard working and fun days. Now the course continues with group and individual coaching. Next gathering with the whole class is July 10.
The Summeracademy is running over the summer and in August each student will have a three-year action plan on how to live on their Art. Read the Swedish website Att leva på sin konst (The Art of living on Art). On this website you can find many reports of creative industries and the incomelevel of Artists, look under the category ”Reports, articles and books”.
The heroes survived. They were supposed to be killed after the film was made, but the film maker just couldn’t. The animated dolls were characters, personalities, so how could you kill them? Instead he hid them. After each movie he hid them in his house with the risk of getting caught. Intellectual property rights in the 70s, the government was afraid that the dolls would be used in another movie and they would have troubles with angry doll makers who wouldn’t get paid. Now we are able to watch them in a small, one-room museum. Beautiful hand-made dolls, made in Russia in the 70s for animated film made in Georgia. The most known is Bombora, a character who just wanted to go to school and in his frustration for not being able to sets fire on things. Now this character is posing over the entrance in the newly made amusement park at Tatsminda.
Wato Tsereleti, a well-known curator and Artist is describing the contemporary Art scene for us on a café. A major problem, many Artist tell us is space and funding. There is no space for Art or large events. In October the conference Artisterium is taking place, and a difficult part has been to find where to have it. A wonder, really, since Tbilisi is still very much a city in transition and there are many empty spaces. Wato Tsereleti has finally been able to find a locality, and the idea is to restore it into an Art center.
Many meetings has been taking place among visual Artists and Art education, between colleagues in the literature and publishing scene in Sweden and Georgia, as well as performance and film. Bakur Sulakauri Publishing is the biggest publishing house in Georgia, publishing around 200 books every year. They are meeting with colleagues at the publishing house Tranan in Sweden, together with writers, to discuss on how they can work together. The idea is that each Art form will come up with project ideas for future cooperation and exchange.
And as we walk to all these meetings, have discussions between colleagues in the Art world, we pass the cells at Rustaveli Avenue and get reminded of the situation in this country. What is it we see in the streets? At Rustaveli, near the Parliament and Freedom Square the streets are filled with cells, small plastic covered boxes where people stay all day, all night in protest of the government. It’s difficult to analyse or understand what the cells stand for. Is it an organized protest of a well defined opposition? Or a more a protest of angry inhabitants showing their miscontent of the president? Or is it a show put forward by a few people with economic resources wanting to overthrow the president and take power? Perhaps it’s an Art show, or an installation? We get different versions, different stories. But it is clear that many people are very tired of the situation, of the threats of war, and long for coming back to a normal situation.
The visit is part of the project EKAE 2009, run by Natverkstan and financed by the Swedish Institute.
Categories: Art Artistic practice Blogg Creative spaces Cultural Journals Cultural Policy Democracy Economy Education Entrepreneurship Georgia Innovation International Network Performance Tackling poverty University
Etiketter:Animation, Artist, Artistic collective workshop, Artistic practice, Burning Platforms, Creativity, crisis, Cultural economy, Cultural Journal, Cultural Policy, Cultural Project, Democracy, Development, Economy, Education, Entrepreneur, Flexibility, Georgia, Globalization, Innovation, International exchange, Literature, pedagogical, Renewal, Social entrepreneur
After circling around the area for quite some time, looking in all small streets, our driver finally finds Kathalya. We are welcomed by three of the active women, and more drop in as our meeting goes on. The office is set in a residential area in Bangalore, where they have room for an office, a small library and a roof-top area for larger meetings and workshops.
Kathalya focus on storytelling as a pedagogical method in schools with small children. They work in the state of Karnataka, in both rural and urban schools, although focus seem to be on the rural areas outside Bangalore. Storytelling is not a new thing, it’s an old tradition in the Indian society (as in many others), but to use it as a pedagogical method to understand and help in schoolwork is relatively new. Imagine to understand math through a story of animals, or start talk about environmental issues through a short story of water, rain and children wanting to play in the puddles. The experience from Kathalya is that this works very well and is a help for many children in understanding and relating schoolwork to societal issues.
Kathalya also offers workshop for teatchers, to help them use storytelling more in teaching. Every story is very well planned; context, schoolsubject, age of children and so forth are weighed in the planning process to create the best result.
The delegation to Bangalore is part of the newly formed exchange of knowledge and experience between the Swedish Region Västra Götaland and Karnataka.
Overlapping of disciplines in education, artistic work and organisations, is put forward by many we meet. At Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology, they combine disciplines to learn new things. The focus is long-term, to build relations and prepare students for long-term sustainable work in India. They believe in combining two strands in their training programmes: reality, and a theoretical framework that give students tools to analyse and reflect on what they meet. Srishti has a strong connection between sectors like art, design, philosophy, business. Behind their success lies an attitude of being ”uncompromisingly idealistic”.
We get the chance to meet Mr B.R Jayaramaraje Urs, Special Commissioner for Information and Cultural Affairs at the Karnataka level, and discuss the role of culture. At cultural policy level, we understand that issues like cultural heritage, identity and cultural mapping are put forward. But Karnataka also fight with challenges such as rural development and the regional inbalance in the State. In Karnataka around 70% live on agriculture, but in strict economic terms of labour requirement, only 20% of human resources is required for output.
Changes are fast and uncompromising, something very true here in India. The IT-sector is one of the fastest growing, Bangalore is often compared to Silicon Valley in San Francisco. And hopes are that it will also signify to Karnataka area, what Silicon Valley has ment to California. Urbanisation is fast, one figure presented is one person a second moving into Bangalore. Farmers have had difficulties in adjusting to these changes. Since a few years back, the suicidal rate among farmers have been growing rapidly. On a comparison between 2000 and 2008 you see a decline, but it’s still significant and far too many. Around 70%, we are told, live on agriculture, a sector that has dealt with a great deal of problems like changing weather, fertilizers that disrupt the traditional circle and methods of sowing, and now also a global economic slow-down which is likely to press prices of cotton and other farm and plantation products. The state has been slow in facing these problems, and for many farmers families are disrupted, survival get more difficult and initiatives to train farmers for other types of jobs has not been fallen out well. In The Hindu (Oct, 30) you can read that farmers are also put under ”undue pressure” by moneylenders and banks that forces them to commit suicide. Private moneylenders have grown four-fold during the past decade.
To read about the art scene in Bangalore, you can look at Time Out Bengaluru. Language is an issue in India, a number told to us is around 300 languages spoken, something that poses challenges on for instant the educational system. An article on the subject written by freelance journalist Margot Cohen can be found here.
For those who read Swedish, get your hands on the book ”Mahatma!” written by Swedish author Zac O’Yeah , since 15 years living in Bangalore. It’s a great description of Gandhis life and accomplishment and an introduction to India.
The delegation to Bangalore is part of the newly formed exchange of knowledge and experience between the Swedish Region Västra Götaland and Karnataka.
If you walk into the backyard of Rue de Garet in Lyon, you find Grame, a center for production, creation and in-residence programmes for composers and musicians. Grame is part of a larger structure for contemporary musicians and composers in France, Les Centres de Création Musicale. By putting together composers and musicians with new technology, the capabilities of Internet, and with artists from all sorts of artistic professions, new music is created. The composer, they argue, is no longer a solitaire, alone with an empty sheet of paper. New opportunities has opened, which have widened their role. The centers work with several activities in combination; the process of creating music, research, residence programmes, training, production and realising projects like festivals and concerts, international exchanges, and cooperation with a wide variety of artistic groups.
Lyon is also hosting the next conference of the European network Encatc, on ”Intercultural Dialogue and Project Managament: New training programmes in a context of major challenges” on 16–18 of October. On the last Board meeting, placed at Grame in Lyon, the final planning was made.
Intersection Incubator started in the 70s trying to help artists with sustainability. Today it’s more formalised and is run through the incubator. 120 projects are part of the programme, which primarily consists of fundraising, business management and promoting work. Few funders give artists direct funding, for this you need to start a non-profit organisation.
But the organisational form has laws that are difficult to overview. Most of the time an individual doesn’t have a chance to keep up with changes in regulations, which makes it difficult says Yesenia Sanchez at our meeting. Intersection is the intermediary between the artist and the funder. The solution is called Fiscal Sponsorship, which in short is taking care of the money in and out, while the artist can concentrate on being an artist. The incubator has a large network of partners that the members easily can get in touch with and use for a small fee.
It can be lawyers, bookkeeping, and marketing.Related organisations could be Fractured Atlas, Springboard for the Arts, National Network of Fiscal Sponsorship (website coming), Center for Culture Innovation and Creative Capital. At Ninth Street Independent Film Center, film festivals and organisations as The National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture (Namac) are gathered in one building in central San Fransisco. The solution was to buy the building, trying to build up the advantages of sharing resources, networking and supporting each other. The independent film sector is a large sector in San Francisco, although the field is changeing, KC Price tells us.
More and more people have their own cameras and computors, the need for spaces where this can be rented or borrowed has changed. The Do t Yourself trend has changed who is producer and customer and film makers in much larger extend work on their own. What still is a need for is meeting places.Namac is one of the organisations based in this building, a non-profit organisation with around 370 members all over USA and some in Canada with the common goal to support and work with the advocacy of independent film, video, audio and digital arts. Amanada Ault and Morgan Sully meet us in their small office. The administration is just a few people, the variety of activities that they do is impressive. Main focus is events, research, capacity building (both individual and organisational) and advocacy. Members meet mainly during the every two-year conference; on-line discussions and information is the main communication tool.
They want to, as they say, put forward ”the value of the collective intelligence of the network” and are at the moment developing a new website, which will be much more user friendly and a platform to be active from. This together with a reflective part where they do articles and studies of the field and to put forward new methods, often provocative, makes them both a practioner and service organisation.
In Sånga-Säby, a small village on the countryside outside Stockholm, around eighty participants from cultural life gathered to discuss local initiatives meeting global influences. Two full and intense days on May 20-21 with experiences of how to make change happen, the challenges of renewal, living the network, leadership and plenty of examples of local intiatives. One of the glimmering moments were when Rasoul Nejadmehr, Multicultural Consultant from the Region of Västra Götaland, told a good-night story. It was the real story of his life as a nomad, born somewhere in the borders around Afghanistan to his today life in Sweden. ”The grass is always greener somewhere else”, he said when reflecting on his childhood. A nomad is always looking for greener grass and a better spot. It’s always somewhere else, it’s always changing. A woman in the audience made the reflection that in the Swedish farming land, you stick with your land and it’s a sign of discontent or envy to look for where the ”grass is greener”. Two opposite perspectives on life.
Global influences came from organisations like Raqs Media Collective and Sarai from New Dehli, British Council in London and Labforculture in Amsterdam. We listened to the experiences of Intercult and Swedish Travelling Exhibitions. The Artist Jörgen Svensson talked about his project Public Safety and the artistic work he did in Stavanger, the Cultural Capital of 2008. The work in Stavanger includes a website for confessions, found at www.skriftestol.se.
Nätverkstan arranged last year a conference in cooperation with the network Encatc under the topic ”On Entrepreneurship and Education in Cultural Life” which very well relate to the same topic as this one. The documentation is possible to download here or from Encatc or Nätverkstan webpages. Nätverkstans contribution to this seminar is found in the following pdf culturalleader08.pdf.
On the website ted.com you find ”Ideas worth spreading”, a collection of inspiring talks from of all sorts of people and celebrities; speakers that talk about everything from the story of the long tail, design as art, digging for ants, health-care issues, the new generation of African leaders, climate changes, the building of US design firm IDEO and many other things.
On links below you find for example Charles Leadbeater, researcher from London-based think tank Demos; David Kelley, who started the Design firm IDEO; and Chris Anderson, editor of Wired and author of the book ”The Long Tail”.
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