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notes from the Cultural Alliance Listening Session

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  • Melissa Dorn Richards
    Hi Everyone, Below are notes taken at the recent Cultural Alliance listening session hosted by MARN and WPCA. Thanks to everyone that joined us to learn more
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 28, 2009
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      Hi Everyone,

      Below are notes taken at the recent Cultural Alliance listening
      session hosted by MARN and WPCA. Thanks to everyone that joined us to
      learn more about the Cultural Asset Inventory and the Creative
      Summit. The ideas you shared will certainly help inform the process.

      There will be more updates coming as the Alliance and GMC move
      forward, and more opportunities for you to voice your thoughts.

      Melissa

      Melissa Dorn Richards
      MARN

      Cultural Alliance/MARN Listening Session

      at Walker�s Point Center for The Arts

      Tuesday, January 27, 2009



      The meeting began with Christine Harris thanking attending artists
      for what they do. She went on to give her professional background and
      then the history of the Cultural Alliance, touching on the aligning
      of the Alliance�s mission to include the counties identified as the
      Milwaukee 7. Christine explained the mission of the Alliance is to
      act as a policy leader, a connector/convener, and a promoter.

      As a policy leader the Cultural Alliance represents the sector at
      the regional, state and local community table, advocates on public
      funding and policy issues, increased private and public funding,
      providing research for policy issue discussions, such as GMC Cultural
      Asset Inventory. As a connector, the Alliance works to create links
      between artists and arts organizations and schools and youth serving
      agencies. Currently through Bader Foundation three year Arts
      Education Collaborative � the Alliance is providing the State�s first
      ever �artist educator� web directory. The Cultural Alliance offers
      seminars and workshops for organizational capacity building, is
      working to broker collaborations; such as shared services and
      resources, and representing region in national organizations, such as
      Americans for the Arts. As a promoter, the Alliance works to develop
      marketing resources to help build audiences around the region,
      building web connections for groups and the consumer and is currently
      working to incorporate social media into the fold.

      Christine went on to say that Cultural Alliance has been working with
      MARN, having exchanged memberships with each other, in order to
      further collaborations. Christine mentioned that the Cultural
      Alliance and MARN are preparing to do a survey in order to better
      know the artistic community and define it.

      She went on to touch on the GMC Summit and gave background to how
      that came to be and explained how the Summit, which takes place
      February 4&5th, will be run. She referenced the Cultural Asset
      Inventory, a report completed for the GMC that recommended Milwaukee
      establish a Cultural Plan and the Summit is the first step in making
      that happen. She gave several examples of the strengths and fragility
      of the cultural sector.

      Peter Goldberg voiced his reservations about the GMC handling the
      Creative Summit/Cultural Asset Inventory, and asked if there will be
      any actual change (or will it be another plan that just sits on a
      shelf somewhere). There was also concern about if artists and small
      arts organizations would be adequately represented. In response to
      these questions, on the GMC and the Cultural Asset Inventory
      Christine explained that she had heard the GMC was interested in this
      research. She pursued the project as it is information valuable to
      the Cultural Alliance and this was an opportunity for the GMC to pay
      for it. She also said she knew that if the research were a success we
      would have the attention of leadership that would have funds. It is
      necessary to have the attention of corporations, funders, and politicos.

      There was discussion on the creative economy and how non-profit and
      for-profit intersects, and the importance of having all voices heard.

      The issue of health care was touched on briefly, and an attendee
      shared information about artist/healthcare exchanges he�d heard about
      in New York. Essentially artists perform or offer artistic services
      in exchange for healthcare, artistic hours traded for healthcare hours.

      The group at large decided that gathering for this type of open
      discussion was particularly useful and should happen with more
      regularity, every 1-2 months. It was thought that it could be opened
      by highlighting the art / performance of someone who is willing to
      share their work.

      There was a call for transparency.

      Jeffrey Holub expressed a need for individual artists to advocate for
      their needs, and posed the idea of there being a repository where
      artists could identify their needs. It was suggested the artist
      survey would be a good place to gather this information, and Jeffrey
      volunteered to help with the survey.

      Thea Kovac discussed collaboration between artists and scientists on
      a clean water effort. Art activists becoming a force for good water.
      They�ve only had 2 meetings to date but look to have more.

      There was a question about who are some successful Alliances and what
      are they doing. Christine�s response mentioned that the Cultural
      Alliance is part of the United Arts Funds a division of the Americans
      for the Arts (AFTA) and our organization is currently a part of that.
      Many of them do funding and re-granting, some do marketing and
      promotion, among other services.

      The overall tone of the meeting was positive, with 35-40 artists in
      attendance. Christine will report back to the group, and anyone else
      that is interested, about what happens at the Creative Summit.
      Another meeting will be held most likely at Walker�s Point Center for
      the Arts, which graciously kept their doors open late to accommodate
      the listening session.

      Stay tuned for further updates, and we�ll see where these efforts
      take us.








      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Mike Brenner
      i don t remember any of us (MARN members) giving MARN permission to turn our personal information over to the Cultural Alliance. did i miss something? On Jan
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 28, 2009
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        i don't remember any of us (MARN members) giving MARN permission to
        turn our personal information over to the Cultural Alliance. did i
        miss something?



        On Jan 28, 2009, at 10:22 PM, Melissa Dorn Richards wrote:

        Christine went on to say that Cultural Alliance has been working with
        MARN, having exchanged memberships with each other, in order to
        further collaborations. Christine mentioned that the Cultural
        Alliance and MARN are preparing to do a survey in order to better
        know the artistic community and define it.
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