Reaching communities through the arts (0422)

Venue: Menzies Belford

Location: Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Event Date/Time: May 30, 2004 End Date/Time: Jun 05, 2004
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Community arts stem from a belief that the arts are for everyone and the consideration of the context of the work and its social impact is as important as artistic quality.

Community arts create a relationship between the art and social, economic and personal development. The arts help to tackle social issues of disadvantage and exclusion, environment, health, and equality. Community arts encompass all artforms, including traditional and contemporary.

Over the past 40 years, community arts has achieved recognition at the highest level. However, its grass roots nature has meant that opportunity for international networking and sharing of ideas between cultures has been limited and ad hoc. By offering this unique opportunity for organisations and individuals from all over the world to come together and discuss their experiences, arts within communities will be able to develop beyond current national boundaries - without compromising the essential local focus of the work.

The seminars covers:
 Arts in urban and rural contexts
 Arts used for social inclusion and regeneration
 Arts and health
 Arts in the workplace
 Arts used for consulting communities
 Arts as a tool for developing personal and social skills
 Arts facilitating life long learning, training and inclusive routes into education

This seminar offers participants the opportunity to explore issues of quality, sustainability, and partnership in community arts projects, using examples from Scotland as case studies. It is designed for participants to discuss policy context and practice in their own country and foster international networks. The timetable provides maximum opportunities for dialogue between participants and the people involved in Scottish community arts scene to foster mutuality. This style of seminar supports the British Council’s mutuality pilot, which is taking place in Scotland

The case studies will provide a picture of artists working with diverse community groups, including children and young people, people with disabilities, asylum seekers, refugees, prisoners, and ethnic minority groups. Their work uses a variety of artforms from drama, music and creative writing to visual arts and dance. During the seminar, there will be a number of site visits to community arts projects to see this work first hand.

This seminar is aimed at policy makers and senior managers in ministries, local government and arts agencies/councils and other bodies implementing or influencing arts policy. The seminar may also be of interest to artists and community workers. The seminar structure is highly interactive and should foster exchange of practice and experience between participants as well as invited speakers.

Judy Savin MA, MSc has been working as a freelance management consultant and researcher for the arts and voluntary sectors since January 2002. Current project work includes: acting as e-mentor for the Scottish Arts Council’s online Evaluation Toolkit and undertaking research in Arts and Disability for the Scottish Arts Council’s European Year of Disabled People 2003 programme. After taking a postgraduate degree in Cultural Policy and Management, she worked for 10 years in the arts as General Manager, Paintings in Hospitals Scotland, Director, Scottish Youth Dance, and Dance Officer, Scottish Arts Council.


Sian Fiddimore

Jacqueline McKay
North Edinburgh Arts Centre

Lindsay Mitchell
Arts Development Officer
Sense Scotland

Liz Moran
MacRobert Arts Centre, Stirling

Lesley Thomson
Community Arts Manager
Aberdeen City Council

Jim Tough
Head of Arts
Scottish Arts Council

*Subject to change


69 Belford Road
United Kingdom

Additional Information

Fully residential fee: £1,500 (en-suite bedroom) The fee includes:  Six nights' accommodation from Sunday 30 May to Friday 4 June  all meals from dinner on the evening of Sunday 30 May to breakfast on Saturday 5 June  a full professional and social programme  welcome and farewell packs (containing a programme, contributors' summaries, local information, etc.)  a group photograph  an experienced event manager in attendance throughout  emergency medical insurance. There are places for up to 30 participants.