Friday, July 16, 2010

ACAC (Little Rock, Arkansas)

Gettin' close to time of departure. T minus...2 days and less than 12 hours! I'm continuing researching organizations (last minute)...I have no organizations yet that I am visiting in Little Rock, but there are a ton that I want to chat with. I'm almost positive I'm meeting with Arkansas Community Arts Cooperative (ACAC), so I'll report on them...

I consider myself an artist of sorts. I am involved in the building trades, green construction, and material reuse...but I believe that nothing should be done unintentionally...building should be done in an artistic way because I believe that buildings can be both green AND uniquely beautiful! This is part of the reason why I am visiting arts organizations, because of my interest in the arts. The second is that I believe that artists make up a large part of a region's culture and thus supremely important in sustaining a healthy city.

In addition to simply being curious about this organization, what I am perhaps most interested in speaking with ACAC about is the issue of access since this is a topic that I have come across often. In the mission statement it says "resources to artists and the community including those who would not normally have access to them." I am curious to see what has been successful in terms of outreach, receiving money to do stuff like providing resources at low or no cost, etc.

The second thing that caught my eye on their website was encouraging involvement. This interests me primarily because I am looking for strategies for community development and I am wondering if they've used public art and involvement in large art installations at all to get conversations within the Little Rock community started.

If so, perhaps something to think about in Buffalo...large "art days" where it goes beyond lot clean up, brings together both artists and community members, and results in long-lasting art installations. Paintings, mosaics, building structures (see cityrepair website...village building convergence...) The important thing to be considered in that is...bringing together people in a fruitful way that focuses on INVOLVEMENT, not exclusivity...

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