Last week Laura Zabel, Executive Director of Springboard for the Arts, has a piece on CityLab discussing the contributions artists can bring to pandemic recovery. She references a report issued by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences that lays out policies to better support cultural organizations and workers. I haven’t read the report yet, but the title “Art is Work,” seems like a pretty good start. Near the close of her article Zabel writes along those same lines.
Artists’ contributions to the work of imagining and enacting a healthier future can be profound, but they do not come about by magic. Art is labor, and unless we build better and more equitable systems of support for artists, we will continue to miss out on this vital ingredient to help build a more just, more connected, and more human world.
The general theme of the article deals with the ability of arts projects to help solve problems, permit people to confront difficult issues, and learn about unfamiliar topics. She mentions a number of projects that have been mounted to address immigration, communities split by construction projects and economic stability that may serve as inspiration for similar projects in your communities.