We Can Make Equity an Agenda Item

Intermedia Arts is working to create and promulgate a culture of equity in
all phases of our activities (including decision-making, planning, implementation, and evaluation), while normalizing conversations about race. 

Equity is a journey; it is an active and dynamic process. Intermedia Arts is engaged in sharing poweraccess and resources with the artists and communities we serve. 
We are currently mid-way through an 18-month innovation process focused on equity as innovation within our Arts-Based Civic Engagement programming, which includes the Catalyst Series (performing arts, visual arts, film, literary), Queer Voices, and our interior and exterior galleries. In Fall 2015, we will be testing new curatorial and decision-making processes; new financial models; and new pathways for access into and throughout our organization. These processes were co-created with the artists and communities we serve.
Start small. Implement what works.Though our initial “tests” are centered in our Arts-Based Civic Engagement programming, our commitment is to amplifying what works across and throughout the organization in Spring 2016 (and beyond).

In 2014, Intermedia Arts was selected as one of four organizations nationally to participate in EMC Arts' Innovation Labs for the Performing Arts, an intensive program in organizational innovation for arts groups. Intermedia Arts' innovation lab is focused on innovation within our arts-based civic engagement programming, which currently includes the Catalyst Series, Queer Voices Reading Series, and our interior and exterior galleries.
  • Intermedia Arts’ innovation lab is focused on equity as innovation within our organization.
  • We are currently mid-way through this 18-month innovation process toward organizational culture change and evolution. New models and ways of working are being tested in our arts-based civic engagement programming, with the commitment to use what works to ignite a shift across and throughout our organization.
  • In Fall 2014, Intermedia Arts held a series of three half-day retreats with our initial working group, a mix of Intermedia Arts' staff, board, performing artists, and presenting partners. In February 2015, Intermedia's innovation team spent five days together at a retreat center in Virginia to dig deeper into the following questions:  

How do we set the conditions for emerging and established local community-engaged artists and curators to be in key decision-making and leadership roles in the future of the organization?

How do we ensure equity and inclusion at the core of our artistic curatorial process and financial models?

  • We will continue to work with EMC Arts as we test and refine our models and new ways of working throughout FY16, and will fully implement our new models in FY17. 
Intermedia Arts' working group: Julie Bates MacGillis, Nastalie Bogira, Shá Cage, Nimo Farah, Michael Hay, Andrea Jenkins, Alberto Justiniano, Maia Maiden, Chaka Mkali, Wendy Morris, Leah Nelson, Julia Nekessa Opoti, Junauda Petrus, J. Otis Powell‽, Jessie Roelofs, Eleanor Savage, Theresa Sweetland, Saymoukda Vongsay, May Lee Yang

Intermedia Arts' innovation team: Julie Bates MacGillis, Nastalie Bogira, Shá Cage, Andrea Jenkins, Chaka Mkali, Julia Nekessa Opoti, Hilda Polanco, J. Otis Powell‽, Theresa Sweetland, and Saymoukda Vongsay