PRACTICE//PRACTICE 2015 END OF YEAR REPORT
Launching into 2016, we’ve taken some time to take look back over the past year of Practice//Practice and its development as an alternative consultancy that reflects the mission, vision, values, and ethos of AS220. As a program of AS220, Practice//Practice has recently refined its guiding vision: we are dedicated to unleashing the creative potential of any community.
By means of consultations, a residency program, workshops, site visits, speaking engagements, and panel discussions, Practice//Practice has engaged a global community of arts managers, thinkers, and developers to collectively grow knowledge. Generating conversation around practices that challenge convention, Practice//Practice seeks to continue inspiring and complementing the work of individuals, organizations and municipalities.
In 2015, AS220’s Practice//Practice faculty has served nearly 1,900 practitioners from around the United States and the world by:
- Providing 19 speeches and presentations to organizations
- Participating in 14 panel discussions
- Consulting with 13 organizations and municipalities
- Providing 13 group tours of AS220’s campus
IMMERSIVE RESIDENCY 2015
In November 2015, AS220 hosted its first ever 5 day Immersive Residency for Artists/Managers (AIR/AM). Practitioners from Rhode Island and as far away as Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Peru explored ways to kick start and sustain the creative communities they are building in their towns and cities. AS220’s three major goals for the Residency were to:
- Inspire possibilities in Residency practitioners
- Share information that is digestible and easy for practitioners to apply to their own context
- Encourage AS220 staff to articulate their own practice and consider how AS220’s mission, vision and values relate to other contexts
Over three intensive days of workshops, presentations, panel discussions, tours and conversation led by AS220 staff, practitioners delved into themes of organizational sustainability (finances, organizational structure and fundraising), strategic development (mission/vision/values and leadership), property (the benefits and challenges involved in owning space), accessibility (how to ensure diversity and affordability in programming), and collaboration (how to nurture both internal and cross-sector partnerships).
AS220 also invited two inspirational guest faculty to share insights into their work with the cohort. Eric Robertson, President of Community LIFT in Memphis, TN, presented on his organization’s approach to engaging citizens-at-large, neighborhood residents, the business community, government, schools, foundations, non-profits and faith-based organizations in comprehensive neighborhood-level community and economic development. Marcos Marrero, Director of Planning and Economic Development for the City of Holyoke, MA, talked about his creative approach to building partnerships and cross-sector relationships while implementing the largest urban renewal plan in Massachusetts.
Throughout the Immersive Residency, Practice//Practice staff gathered comprehensive feedback that will inform future Immersive Residencies. The practitioners were incredibly generous in sharing what inspired them and how they would apply their learning to their own contexts, and by making thoughtful suggestions for improvement.
“The AS220 Practice//Practice Immersive Residency was like a whole semester of a grad program on Arts Management crammed into 3 days (but vastly more appealing), led by an enthusiastic life coach whose advice you actually believe and whose morals you actually agree with. They welcomed us with open arms and open financial reports and couldn’t have been happier to share with us all their knowledge and resources and strategies and anecdotes. I cannot possibly overstate how formative the experience was and how much more confidence I now have in my own projects.” – Nora Renick Rinehart, Teaching Artist, Co-Founder of Craft/Work, Chicago, IL
More on the impact of the Residency is featured on our Practitioners page.
NEXT STEPS FOR PRACTICE//PRACTICE
AS220’s inaugural Immersive Residency was a catalyst for future visioning and goal setting for Practice//Practice. Since the Residency, Practice//Practice staff have redefined the overall goals of the program and set an ambitious two year plan to grow our support of an ever-expanding cohort of artists, arts managers, culture bearers, planners, developers, architects, community organizers and students. We are starting off 2016 by planning our second Immersion Program to be hosted at AS220 April 6 through April 10.
The overall program goals for Practice//Practice are:
- To inspire possibilities and encourage people to think differently
- To offer information that is transparent, digestible and can inform people’s work
- To help practitioners set and implement goals for their work by offering individualized services
- To facilitate personalized networks of sharing and learning between artists, arts organizations, and community activists that bridge disciplines and sectors
- To spark socially responsible community development by valuing the latent creativity present in all communities
Our two year plan for Practice//Practice includes:
- Implementing Spring and Fall immersion programs for two years
- Developing a series of workshops aimed at regional audiences and student users
- Exploring opportunities to develop college courses and accreditation
- Regularly reviewing fee structures to ensure accessibility and programmatic stability
- Developing more targeted marketing for identified audiences
- Continuing to develop consultation services and deliverables
- Developing an annual speaking tour to engage students and professionals in other cities
AS220 was founded on the principle that freedom of expression is crucial for the development of strong communities and individual spirits. Practice//Practice supports AS220’s broader mission to ensure all people can achieve their full creative potential and contributes to building knowledge about art and culture’s critical role in developing healthy communities.
We thank you for your support in helping us unleash the creative potential of communities across America and the world.