RFP CALL – EAP presents: (your idea here)

EAP_RFP_bannerWhat can our network do to make the arts sector healthier, and better reflect our values of empowerment, relevance, and diversity?

EAP invites you, as a member of the network, to propose and help execute a project that helps to fulfill our mission. An online meet-up, a skill-share session, a social media campaign, or big event. The arts world is your oyster!

The programs of EAP have always been built by the very people they are serving. This opportunity is a natural extension of the principle. Who better to create new programs for our network than you, the members of our network?

We’re accepting proposals through October 31 for new projects to begin in 2014. If your project is selected, we’ll provide administrative support and even a small budget to work with! No idea is too big or too small, though we’ll of course want some specifics as well as explanation of why you think it fits our mission.

Check out the complete proposal guidelines, and start talking to your colleagues about the projects you’ve always wanted to see from your EAP network. The Leadership Team is looking forward to reading your proposals!

Questions? Contact EAP Director Adam Fong, adam@emergingsf.org

Reflections on Leadership

reflections on leadershipBy Julie McDonald

I participated in the Community Arts Education Leadership Institute last summer, a program which included a 360-degree feedback process, a week-long intensive seminar, and follow-up coaching. This experience has been a transformational learning experience for me, largely due to the rare opportunity to stop, reflect, and plan in the context of group discussions regarding effective leadership.

The importance of reflection

In the past, I resisted taking the time to reflect on my leadership because I had a sense of guilt about taking the time away from other tasks I viewed as more practical. The importance of reflection finally hit home for me as a result of the profound connections I made with the group and the intense level of discussions which we were engaged in.

As individuals, we never could have gained the depth of insights we generated as a group, nor the pragmatic applications and strategies that sprouted as a result of those insights.

Each participant, having a different set of stories, experiences, and knowledge, made a unique and valuable contribution to the group through full participation. The safe, open, and supportive atmosphere enabled for participants, including me, to completely open up their hearts and minds. It was an enormous blessing to be both giving and receiving from such an inspired, diverse group of professionals.

A 360-degree view

One of the most impactful, and somewhat horrifying, activities we engaged in was a 360-degree feedback process.

Fifteen individuals – direct reports, board members, colleagues and stakeholders – answered questions regarding my overall leadership competencies in areas such as vision, wisdom, communication, integrity, and conflict management. I could feel heart palpitations when I was handed the 40-page summary of their candid, anonymous interviews.

This was the most comprehensive and structured feedback I’d ever received in my entire career, and I had virtually no sense of what might be inside. I was able to digest the information after taking several deep breaths and reading through it several times. Being thrust into this new level of the unknown had an incredible effect on my learning. I gained new awareness of my deepest strengths and validation on things I suspected I needed to work on (always that dreaded conflict management), as well as several eye-opening comments on communication issues with my organization.

The supportive environment of the institute helped for each of us to further distill the results of our 360-degree reviews, and to create action plans around where we wanted to grow. Three months of coaching after the institute helped to bring our action plans to life.

Reflecting on a regular basis

Since the institute ended over a year ago, I’ve been consistently engaged in this new practice of slowing down and taking the time to reflect on a regular basis, resulting in a heightened sense of awareness of my own strengths and areas for improvement, as well as a deeper clarity on my core values and how they can influence my decision making. I’ve also deepened my practice of requesting ongoing feedback from others in a structured way.

Overall, my participation in the institute has enabled for me to be fully present and to make more meaningful contributions to others around me, my organization and my community.

About Julie McDonald

Julie is the executive director of Leap: Arts in Education.

Standing Room Only

Standing Room Only
Defining Success in Arts and Culture
Tuesday, August 14
6:00 PM – 8:30 PM

hosted by Cartoon Art Museum

RSVP via Eventbrite

Is it a hit? In the arts we define success in very specific ways. What does it mean for a program to be a hit? Commercial and popular success? Critical acclaim? Earned income? All of the above?

Join the Bay Area Emerging Museum Professionals and Emerging Arts Professionals SFBA as we mingle and define success in the creation and presentation of art.

This collaborative conversation and mixer will begin with short presentations from 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM featuring:

Jenna Glass, Associate Director of Marketing, ODC
Annie Phillips, Musician / Public Relations Assistant, SF Symphony / Manager, Magik*Magik Orchestra
Rob Ready, Marketing Manager, ODC / Co-Founder, PianoFight
Gregory Stock, Museum Educator-Public Programs, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
Brian Wiedenmeier, Institutional Giving Director, ODC

They’ll share their experiences with hit shows, describe how their organizations define success, and talk about the ways emerging arts workers can redefine and better measure success.

We’ll keep the ideas flowing with casual conversations, social media, and an “idea board,” all while enjoying drinks and snacks compliments Emerging Arts Professionals.


6:00 PM – 6:30 PM  Drinks & Networking

6:30 PM – 7:30 PM  Presentations

7:30 PM – 8:30 PM Open Discussion & Networking

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Presented by Bay Area Emerging Museum Professionals and Emerging Arts Professionals / San Francisco Bay Area, hosted by Cartoon Art Museum

The Art of Tech: Zero1 Festival App to Capture the Crowd

Zero1 App to Capture the CrowdBy Michael DeLong, Managing Editor

Nonprofit arts organization Zero1 needed a way to help people make sense of its biennial, Seeking Silicon Valley, scheduled for September 2012.

Spread over three months and more than twice as many cities, the festival presents a big challenge with respect to keeping visitors engaged and informed.

To tackle the challenge, Zero1 decided to create an app. As recently noted by Frank Barry of Blackbaud, technology plays a key role in audience engagement for the arts and culture sector. For Zero1, an organization whose mission is at the intersection of art and technology, a tech-based approach to this problem makes perfect sense.

A community comes together

With that in mind, Zero1’s community engagement manager Danielle Siembieda-Gribben organized HackFlux: a weekend hackathon bringing together a mix of coders, developers, designers, artists, and thinkers this past June. The goals of the hackathon were twofold:

  1. To build a community around mobile development and art
  2. To have in place the starting point for an app to create a seamless visitor experience at the biennial

Flexing her background in community organizing — Siembieda-Gribben spent years working for ACORN — she structured the hackathon to maximize learning and shared knowledge. A Tech Advisory Committee of nine Bay Area technologists such as Kollective Mobile CEO Sian Morson mentored the teams.

A core group of interns assembled by Siembieda-Gribben will go on to develop the winning team’s idea, using an API designed by Lift Projects for Zero1.

The teams get to work

The participants gathered at TheGlint, a live-work community aimed at accelerating the creation of value through design, philosophy, the arts, technology, and entrepreneurship — all set atop Twin Peaks backed by a stunning view of the Bay.

For 48 hours, four teams brainstormed, tinkered, designed, and revised, culminating in a presentation for a hand-selected jury. Including tech experts such asAngelHack founder Greg Gopman, Michael Shiloh of DorkBot San Francisco and the Exploratorium, and TheGlint co-founder Alexandros Pagidas, the jury picked the winning idea based on set criteria. The app should

  • be accessible to the widest possible audience
  • be feasible to create, sustain, and maintain with the resources provided
  • have a strong concept demonstrating creativity and innovation

Additionally, each team needed to provide a clear plan for the execution of the app by the end of summer.

Zero1 HackFlux WeekendA winner emerges

The four teams brought excellent ideas to the table, impressing both the crowd and the jury. Proposals included fun geocaching activities to draw attendees into deeper engagement with the biennial; informative, interactive maps; and a personalized, art-enhanced experience to alleviate the stress of festival parking.

A remarkable part of the judging portion of the event – and of the hackathon overall – was the collaborative energy sparked among the teams. As one team presented, others offered on-the-spot suggestions. The feeling was one of cooperation rather than competition.

In the end, one team’s idea did stand out to the jury. Team Reactor, composed of Kelsey Innis, Anna Billstrom, and Helen Mair, proposed an app to crowdsource reactions to the festival artwork in the form of voice, text, and drawings.

Called The Reaction Trader, the app will allow festival-goers to trade anonymous reactions to nearby art (the response mechanism remains locked until the viewer is within range). It will also allow attendees to vote up specific reactions, creating a leaderboard of top responses.

There was some debate around the wisdom of allowing for anonymous comments — the fine line between candor and a race to the bottom — but the winners have the rest of the summer to work it out with the core team.

Don’t miss Zero1’s biennial this September to December and let us know in the comments how your organization has used technology to engage its audiences.

Interested in putting together your own hackathon? Check out NetSquared’s tips for creating a successful app-for-good event by Vanessa Rhinesmith.

A version of this post appeared on the TechSoup blog.