Community arts  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Community Art could be loosely defined as a way of creating art in which professional artists collaborate more or less intensively with people who don't normally actively engage in the arts. Community arts, also sometimes known as "dialogical art", "community-engaged" or "community-based art," refers to artistic activity based in a community setting. Works from this genre can be of any art forms and is characterized by interaction or dialogue with the community. The term was defined in the late-1960s and spawned a movement which grew in the United States, Canada, the UK, Ireland, and Australia.

Often community art is based in deprived areas, with a community oriented, grassroots approach. Members of a local community will come together to express concerns or issues through an artistic process, sometimes this may involve professional artists or actors. These communal artistic processes act as a catalyst to trigger events or changes within a community or even at a national or international level.

In English-speaking countries community art is often seen as the work of community arts centre. Visual arts (fine art, video, new media art), music, and theater are common mediums in community art centers. Many arts companies in the UK do some community-based work, which typically involves developing participation by non-professional members of local communities.

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Community art and public art

The term community art refers also to field of community, neighborhood and public art practice with roots in social justice and popular and informal education methods. In the art world, community art signifies a particular art making practice, emphasizing community involvement and collaboration. Community art is most often art for social change and involves some empowerment of the community members who come together to create artwork/s with artists. This is a growing national, international, regional and local field. Recently community arts and sustainability work or environmental action have begun to interface, including urban revitalization projects creating artwork at a neighbourhood level.

In Scandinavia, the term community art means more often contemporary art project.

Online community art

A community can be seen in many ways, it can refer to different kind of groups. There are also virtual communities or online communities. Internet art has many different forms, but often there is some kind of community that is created for a project or it is an effect of an art project.

Community theatre

Community theatre includes theatre made by, with, and for a community—it may refer to theatre that is made entirely by a community with no outside help, or to a collaboration between community members and professional theatre artists, or to performance made entirely by professionals that is addressed to a particular community. Community theatres range in size from small groups led by single individuals that perform in borrowed spaces to large permanent companies with well-equipped facilities of their own. Many community theatres are successful, non-profit businesses with a large active membership and, often, a full-time professional staff. Community theatre is often devised and may draw on popular theatrical forms, such as carnival, circus, and parades, as well as performance modes from commercial theatre. Community theatre is understood to contribute to the social capital of a community, insofar as it develops the skills, community spirit, and artistic sensibilities of those who participate, whether as producers or audience-members.

Key artists

See also





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Community arts" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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