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New NEA Resources for Arts-based Community Development

originally posted on National Endowment for the Arts
September 23, 2014

Exploring Our Town Website, Expanded 2015 Our Town Guidelines, and Upcoming National Convening

Washington, DC—The National Endowment for the Arts is launching new resources to assist practitioners who are working on arts-based community development projects. These resources will assist those practitioners to develop projects that are authentic, equitable, and that augment existing local assets.

Those resources are:

Exploring Our Town, an online resource featuring case studies of more than 60 previous Our Town projects complete with an insights section of lessons learned
2015 Our Town guidelines with a new project type designed to build and share creative placemaking knowledge more broadly
Beyond the Building: Performing Art Organizations and Transforming Place a national convening to be held on November 3, 2014
“The Our Town program is a prime example of the power the arts have on our everyday lives,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The arts can connect us, they can weave communities together, and they can infuse our lives with a deeper sense of place and purpose. The arts have the power to change where we live, and who we are, for the better. To that end, the resources we are making available today will provide the essential tools to those interested in undertaking the important work of creative placemaking and community development around an arts-based project.”

Exploring Our Town

Exploring Our Town responds to requests from the arts community for ready access to an easy-to-search resource on best practices in community development and creative placemaking. The resource is divided into two sections, Project Showcase and Project Insights. Project Showcase features case studies of more than 60 Our Town projects organized by project setting, project type, and by state. The Project Insights section, divided by Project Process, Project Setting, and Project Type, includes lessons learned, relevant case studies, and additional resources.

Photo: Feast on the Street brings together the community around a half-mile long dining table in downtown Phoenix to celebrate food and art in the desert. This was part of Phoenix’s Our Town project called Cultural Connections. Photo by Andrew Pielage.

Read the story at NEA

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