Saturday Jan 9, 2016: CREATIVE CITY
We will begin by exploring the utopian idea of the creative city, where artists and arts organizations are viewed as critical components of a healthy ecosystem. We’ll ask what role the arts sector can play in “civic creativity” or “cultural strategy” that creates “social wealthy” and helps shape public sentiment, city planning and policy. We will also discuss the robust migration of the technology community from Silicon Valley to San Francisco and Oakland and the effect it has had on the non-profit and commercial arts sectors. Could we have predicted the challenges? How can we move forward? Can a revived social logic, balancing independence and interdependence cultivate resilience for artists, arts and culture workers and arts organizations?
Shalini Agrawal is the Director of the Center for Art + Public Life at the California College of the Arts. The Center believes community engagement is the foundation of a practice focused on changing the world. In order for CCA students to fully experience this practice, the Center facilitates mutually beneficial partnerships with community-based organizations outside of the college.
Trained as an architect, Agrawal has worked in New York, Chicago and San Francisco on projects ranging from architecture, interior architecture, landscape architecture and installation art. In addition, she has over 20 years of experience engaging diverse communities on local, national and international forums. She co-founded the Chicago non-profit Architreasures where she designed its program that engages in participatory design methods to assist communities in transforming schoolyards and public community spaces. She facilitated multi-disciplinary workshops between participants of all ages, ethnicity and socio-economic status. Now in its 20th year, Architreasures was recently awarded the AIA Presidents award for significantly advancing the principles of livable communities and promoting the understanding of the profession of architecture.
Agrawal’s professional practice, MAC Studio Landscape Architecture, is one of the select firms invited to complete the San Francisco Unified School District Green Schoolyard Initiative for middle and high schools. Agrawal holds firm to the belief that the individual’s well being is a reflection of the community’s, and the community’s well being is a reflection of its constituents. She received her Master of Architecture from the University of Illinois at Chicago. | Shalini Agrawal’s LinkedIn
- The Creative City by Charles Landry p.11-31 (artists p. 15)
- Knight Cities: A conversation with Theaster Gates
- Healthy Arts Ecosystem By Createquity
- Introduction to the Tenderloin Museum & Walking Tours by Del Seymour
Identify two Bay Area organizations that stand out for you. Gather information about them and how they are connected to one another (doesn’t matter how, you can use your imagination). Please wear comfortable shoes for this session.
- How can a focus on creativity change the way our cities work?
- What is the ideal role of artist and creative place-makers in the civic landscape?
- What is the reality of the role in most urban centers?
- Identify some possible actions to change that role.
- In reference to your two organizations, consider:
- What is the connection between them?
- How do they play off one another?
- Do they share an audience?
- Examine similar themes in their work.
- Do they seek the same funding? What else?
If you’d like to read further:
- Knight Cities: A conversation with Deborah Cullinan by Carol Coletta
- Creative but Poor? Yep, the ‘Creative Class’ Has Its Class Divide by Geoff Dembicki
- One Solution to SF’s housing Crisis: Microhomes SF Examiner
- A Hidden San Francisco Creek will become Street Art by Adele Peters
- San Francisco Plans to Produce More Fog to Build Community Spirit by John Metcalfe
- Books: The Rise of the Creative Class by Richard Florida
- Why Richard Florida’s Honeymoon is Over by Murray Whyte
- Struggling with the Creative Class by Jamie Peck
- Diary By Rebecca Solnit
- The Bacon wrapped Economy by Ellen Cushing
- Wealth and the City by Emmanuel Rodriguez.
- Why Middle-Class Americans Can’t Afford to Live in Liberal Cities by Derek Thompson
- SF Isn’t the Only Unaffordable City by Peter Lawrence Kane