Thursday, October 6, 2011

Events, National Call for Artists, Grant/Training Opportunities

Arte by Jesus Barraza and Melanie Cervantes- download free images, view/buy their posters at 

As we witness a rising tide of protests against corporate greed and social inequities, I pass along the following events and information as a reflection of my hopes for the movimiento: for us to share resources and support each other, to make connections across communities and disciplines, and for artists, as Toni Cade Bambara once said, "to make the revolution irresistible".

-The Illinois Humanities Council is accepting applications for project, media, tech-assistance, and general support grants up to $5,000. I appreciate them explicitly stating their interest in supporting projects that reach out to historically neglected communities. Now, it’s up to us to take advantage of this opportunity. Eligibility guidelines are available here. Deadline to apply is October 15.

-The Emerging Leaders Network of Chicago will be hosting their second discussion group event on Monday, Oct. 17. The evening’s discussion will focus on creating collaborations among arts organizations and artists, so a great opportunity to share your work to a wide array of folks eager to connect with you. It will be hosted at 6pm at the TGI Friday's on Erie Street, so stop by and help make that Monday evening feel a bit like Friday.

-Chicago is blessed to be a hot destination for national conferences, especially those with the arts as a focus. Another one coming in a couple of weeks is the Alliance of Artists Communities' (AAC) annual conference, taking place October 19-22, in Chicago’s downtown Loop. As the national association of artist residency programs, the AAC states the conference’s theme will be to “examine the relevance of place in art-making and arts organizations and will challenge us to develop artist-centered approaches to engaging our communities and developing healthy organizations.” They have some great workshops and speakers, including personal favorites, performer Robert Farid Karimi and author Luis Alberto Urrea, and also Alex Kotlowitz, co-director of the amazing documentary, The Interruptors.

-The Illinois Arts Council is currently accepting applications for its annual Individual Artist Support (IAS) Initiative, which offers Illinois artists a chance to as they say, “realize a career goal, take advantage of a professional opportunity, or for the production and presentation of an artistic project”. This grant is a great opportunity to receive funding to attend a conference or workshop (perhaps this is a good time to get funding for next year’s NALAC Leadership Institute?), or produce that exhibit, performance or cultural gathering you have always wanted to do. Details are here, and the deadline to apply is October 27.

-Rockwood, a progressive leadership training organization based in the Bay Area, is accepting applications for their National Fellowship for Leaders in Arts and Culture. As they mention, the fellowship is “designed  for leaders engaged in cultural work, film, dance, visual arts, performing arts, literary arts, multidisciplinary arts, etc. to elevate the societal impact of their work as critical agents of change.”  Most of the training is subsidized, meaning it would be worthwhile to consider getting nominated and completing the application by October 26 and taking advantage of this great opportunity.  More information on the link above. 

-Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, a.k.a, MACLA, one of my favorite arts spaces in my hometown of San José, California, is making a national call for artists for their 4th Chicana/o Biennial, an “exhibition and public forum conceived to take inventory of and invite reflection every two years on the continuously emergent energy, critical edge, and aesthetic interventions within contemporary Chicano art.” It is a great chance to build your resume/portfolio, expose your work to new audiences, and establish a relationship with a great arts space in the Bay Area.

And to get even more personal, I must also invite my thousands of loyal followers to events that I am volunteering for; mark your calendars for Pilsen’s Open Studios (Oct. 15-16, and the Little Village Arts Festival is also that weekend), Pros Arts Studios Muertos de la Risa (Nov. 2) and Pozolada (Dec. 3).

With Chicago Artist Month going on now, I am sure there are a number of events that you may know of. I am particularly interested in other ethnic arts events and opportunities. I would like to make this blog as diverse as possible. Please send me info, and would be glad to post it out in a future blog post!


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