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Mission and Goals

Guiding Practices


Peace Event



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Pages Created by:
Paul Hillman

Background information on the Cultural Arts Coalition's Origin

Arizona Desert Botanical Gardens.

CAC strategic planning.

Youth voices with educator's input.

Recorded from Saturday, June 4, 2005, Cultural Arts Coalition Meeting, 0900 @ the Desert Botanical Gardens

Vision & Direction for the Cultural Arts Coalition
"Only through art can we get outside of ourselves and know another's view of the universe which is not the same as ours and see landscapes which would otherwise have remained unknown to us like the landscapes of the moon." Marcel Proust

Internationally recognized World Historian, James Burke, made a statement on the PBS special "Connections": "Artists are the shamans of our communities."

Keith Johnson, African drummer and performance, West Valley Art Museum,
July 2005.

Hopi dancers convey cultural stories, Museum of Northern Arizona, July 2005.

Playwright and professor Anna Deavere Smith, Keynote speaker at an "Ethics and Arts Conference" at ASU on October 30, 2001, stated, "Art is a metaphor to communicate universal ideas and beliefs. It is a primary role of the artist to be a provocateur for social change."

Then in April of 2002, at a Wade Smith Memorial lecture, ASU Gammage auditorium, Dr. Mary Frances Berry, Chairperson of U.S. Commission on Civil Rights spoke this sentiment, "The world and everyone in it are connected. This is not limited to human connection, but the connections of our thought processes. We must create critical connections through reflective thought to prevent racial isolation and racial profiling."

"Visual art, rather than merely playing a pleasurable, but peripheral role in human societies, has long been of fundamental importance." "The product-the work of art- serves as an identifier of the group of individuals who identify with and understand the arts' symbols in conveying values, ideas and beliefs of that community. In so doing, art helps create cooperation within any group." Dr. Kathryn Coe, discussing her book, The Ancestress Hypothesis: Visual Art as Adaptation, Rutgers University Press, January 2003, at a salon in the home of judy butzine, Sept. 21, 2003.

Dr.Grigsby's artwork titled "The Family", August 2005.

Informative text about "The Family".

Kuba and African-American art at Estrella Mountain Community College, Jan 2005.

Review :
At the end of the first Cultural Arts Coalition meeting Dr. Boyer wanted clarity on what is the underlying goal of this coalition. One of the main concepts discussed by the group: to meet the emotional and intellectual needs of all youth. George Waterhouse and Dr. Boyer talked about concerns in this very chaotic world to help youth gain a sense of SELF-PRIDE and SELF-ESTEME. In reviewing Bill Moyer's (nationally recognized journalist) PBS special about youth in crisis and those creating violent acts in their neighborhoods, Moyer outlined successful projects aimed at turning the lives of these youth around. The formatting of these nationwide programs is consistent: First identifying shared universal issues for youth and make available programming to deal with these emotional, physical and/or intellectual difficulties.

Cultural Arts Coalition participants' discussion.

General Criteria of Concerns:
1. A Need to function within a safe space.
2. The Need to Belong to a group.
3. The Need to be mentored by caring persons who provide structure, discipline, and tools to accomplish specific (instilling a work ethic) tasks successfully (scholarship, creative expression, conflict resolution and income-related skills).
4. The need to feel that what one has created/accomplished is honored and valued in the community where one lives, giving one a sense of purposefulness and importance.

It is a belief of CAC participants that community based cultural arts/literacy programming provides the processes to experience fulfillment of all of these criteria of needs. These issues pertain not only to youth, but are applicable to people of all ages, cultures and gender affiliations, including long life learners.

The constitution of InSEA specifies that creative activity in art is a basic need in all people; and that art is one of humankind's highest forms of expression and communication. It understands education through art as a natural means of learning at all periods of the development of the individual fostering values and disciplines essential for the full intellectual, emotional and social development of human beings in a community. Mason, Rachel, Editorial, "Creative Education Through Arts And Crafts", International Journal of Education through arts, Volume 1, Number 1, Summer 2005, p.3.

The group reviewed commentary from the first meeting as considerations of need and direction for establishing this coalition:

*** Group consensus states: when designing and facilitating community cultural arts programming a commonality of theme (ISSUE DRIVEN THEME, concerning the human condition) throughout diverse cultural contexts needs to be presented to make the programming relevant to ALL participants regardless of age, cultural background or gender affiliation. The example of Carmen DeNovais and Zarco Guerrero's La Procession initiated in the down town streets of Phoenix acknowledging the deaths of the city's children to violent acts was presented. web site of Dr. Mary Stokrocki

Boys and Girls Club youth honor ancestors at Dia de los Muertos event at Heard Museum, November 2000.

Ofrenda by Zarco & Carmen
Guerrero, Museo Chicano, 2000.

Youth at La Procession, Downtown Phoenix, 1998
Student art from Janet Broyle's art class, South Mountain High School

Concentrate on universal themes that focus on our common human condition of life.

*** This brings up the concept of collaborations and partnerships to research, document, format for reproduction, instruct, secure combined funding for the cultural arts community programming, etc.

Dr. Stokrocki has as a university researcher been very instrumental in getting the word out about these kinds of programs in Arizona during her national and international travels to various arts education conferences.

*** All of the community cultural arts programming must be about relationship building through community participation. Our work is not isolated from engaging all the arts disciplines and is not disassociated from the process of community building through developing long-term relationships structured on nurturing all participants with equal voices. Melanie Ohm, Director of Community Programs at ASU, Herberger College of Fine Arts, feels this is a distinguishing characteristic of the Community Cultural Arts Developmental Process.

Dr. Melanie Ohm and Dr. Dianne Anderson-Nickel.

There is a mentoring that occurs between the artist/teacher/facilitator and the participant that goes beyond the art of making a product. There is also a long-term commitment between the participants. This is not a modernist way of looking at art. It is further discussed in Dr. Kathryn Coe's book the Ancestress Hypothesis.

*** It is essential to engage the university community in this dialogue because this is where the teaching occurs of those persons who go into the community. The means to do this needs to be examined and explored in greater detail. This may be a committee forum representational of one of the spokes in the logo of the wheel. (Please note information about the significance of the CAC logo)

*** There has to be an expanding dialogue of what the students are taught beyond the current arts curriculums. Again a sub committee discussion. Art is itself a language and how it is experienced is a global means of communicating universal ideas, values and beliefs. Art is not separate from everyday life. This is a concept that to be more impressed in the corporate and legislative communities it has to be practiced. It cannot be practiced if it is not taught. Dr. Dianne Anderson-Nickel and Michael Prepsky are both long standing music and visual arts teachers in our community. Both of them talk about the need to design programming and partnerships that make the already hectic role of the arts educator more easily attainable in a classroom of funding cuts and time constraints.

Pastor Elementary School, Phoenix, Arizona.

Mural created by youth and John Alvarez, teacher, at Pastor Elementary School facilitated by Tlisza Jaurique and Marcus Zillioux, June 2005.

Reception and honoring ceremony for all artists.

*** In addressing the understanding of cultural history there needs to be clarification through dialogue about "Who owns history?" Culture is an evolving process. The CAC will examine and discuss the idea of "Living Culture". Marcus Zillioux and Tlisza Jaurique are exemplary artists/teachers who work with this concept in their community arts making activities.

*** We need to identify the components of good arts teaching if it is able to affect the inner core of an individual, through methodology that does not just access the intellectual, but is also able to focus on the concepts of self-pride, self-esteem, self-worth and power of the soul or spirit. Is this not "character education"? Youth attending the gathering at the Desert Botanical Garden reinforced the need to have their voices heard in the art making process. It is important for them to be validated for their experiences and understanding of the world around them and to convey these stories through the artistic process.

The group will examine and explore language that considers the spiritual in art. Please note Dr. Seymour Simmon's article at the end of this text.

*** How can the arts education programming that is vital in the process of opening us up to different perspectives and critical thinking be "sustainable"? Discussion of creating a product line of material objects that function not only as a means to generate income, but also promote the marketing of CAC.

*** In supporting and promoting this organization's mission we must get to a member or members of the governing board.