Striving to Survive: C3 Arts Visioning, November 9th

Our visioning session last week was somewhat clouded by the pressing need for funding to keep C3 alive. The topic of Survive, Revive, Thrive, resonates with our needs right now and it was also tricky to balance the lack of certainty of C3’s financial future and introducing new folks to C3 with brainstorming ideas for the coming months. In this meeting I was reminded that there are great people who care about these things and want to see C3 survive. I was also reminded of the importance to work fundraising into what we do.

Two tasks at hand:

1. create a short-term series of mini-events that can generate some funding, enthusiasm and participation from the community. Use this energy to generate direction for the winter months.
2. find an unusual location that will spark and inspire the direction for a large-scale multi-media event/party for late winter or early spring.

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Notes from the meeting:

C3 Arts Visioning November 9th

What do we mean by community?
two fold:
artists working with artists
artists with non-artists (the community at large)
Focus on creativity, not art- so as to be inclusive and encouraging the creativity in everyone

This is a good time to focus on Northampton and seize the energy from the election
people feel disenfranchised
to create forums for people to be heard, to be creative, to find creative solutions

What kind of community do we want?

Let's make programs and opportunities that encourage people to vision together.
interviews with neighbors
facilitated conversations
trainings in community action for artists and cultural workers

What is C3's mission? Is it more than the arts? What about the nonprofit/community piece? How are the arts (supporting artists, and everyone's creativity) connected to community building and social justice?

How can we think about programming for the long-term when we are uncertain of C3's financial future? We need a Fundraiser

TWO ISSUES:

Longer term programming and how to make arts reflect our mission

FUNDRAISING: how can C3 survive? Short term events that bring in some cash, raise our profile, get people excited, involved and committed. Ideally these events reflect our mission so that the people they draw in will be inspired and activated to stay involved or attend other events.

Is C3 visible? How do people find out about C3? Who are we connecting with and how?

VALLEY ART SHARE -400+ members is the key to building connections across geographic boundaries up and down the valley, create more cross fertilization between towns
-Valley Art Share van to shuttle folks to art events in other towns

What about a membership structure for C3/Valley Art Share?
Paying members would receive support from C3 and discounts to trainings/workshops events. Work in fundraising/income stream into what C3 does while still making it accessible and inclusive.

What does a truly welcoming and inclusive event look like?

Artist want to feel supported and not isolated:
help with proposals
skill shares
trainings
help with publicity
access to space
call for ideas, call for questions to pose to the community

Fundraising event ideas:

events where people can meet each other
Valley Art Share mixer
gigantic art sale
Decadent art cake event- for Valentine's Day?

Location Ideas:

Honda
Church
Chilsens
Dynamite-Main St.
WWII club
48 Main
Kolmorgan
Bridge St. School
Shaws
Hotel Northampton
Childs Park
Fairgrounds
Parking Garage
People's Institute
Old School Commons

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Tags: C3 Arts Visioning, Survive, Revive, Thrive

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