as a regional arts council, is to provide
training, consultation, communication, and
coordination which do not duplicate or
compete with local arts council efforts; but rather assist them in carrying out their activities more effectively, as well as bringing to bear regional and provincial issues and perspectives and sharing assistance and expertise which may not be available at a local level.
Ten things you can do...to embrace local
1. Buy one piece of local art
a year, every year, no matter what. It could
be a painting to grace your mantle, one your
children will argue over after you're gone.
Or it could be a handthrown coffee cup that
just makes every cup taste better, somehow.
Size doesn't matter; it's the principle.
2. Learn one new thing each year. Take a tap
class. Spend a weekend at a journal-writing
workshop. Attend a demonstration on stained
glass, and step up and ask every question
you can think of. Then, sign up for the
3. Expose yourself. That is, expose yourself
to some form of artistic expression that you
think you won't like. Catch the community
opera presentation of Figaro. Or, if opera's
your thing, take in an earful of the local
grunge group, Spiked and Nasty. Think
poetry's for the birds? Open your ears, and
your mind. (Check out Kootenay Festivals and
Events for listings of upcoming events in
4. Give the gift of your community's
artists. This year, make every gift you buy
something original: a CD hotpressed by a
local choir; a new book by a local writer; a
hand blown glass bauble for the tree, and
from the forge next door, a hook to hang a
hat on - which, serendipitously, was hand
felted down the street.
5. Pass it around. Buy someone else a ticket
to something you enjoy. Take a friend along,
or just treat someone you appreciate -
anonymously. Have you ever bought a ticket
to something and then been unable to attend?
Don't ask for a refund: ask the venue to
find a deserving recipient, preferably one
who's broke. Or send two tickets to a youth
centre or seniors' facility. At the event,
try to guess who might be there thanks to
6. Challenge yourself. Pick a good day and
try to find as many art-related things to do
as you can. Do them all: read the book,
write the poem, play the tune, hear the
band, watch the dance, applaud the play, go
to the gallery. Challenge six other people
to do the same.
7. Sing. Learn a song composed by a local
musician and sing it: in the shower, in the
car, walking down the street. Drive your
co-workers crazy. It doesn't matter that you
sound like a wombat in heat. When you go to
sleep, dream about it. Now, teach it to
8. Volunteer: for your local cultural event,
for the theatre production, for your arts
organization. Sit at the information table,
paint the backdrop, take the tickets, do the
soundcheck, carry the chairs, place the
podium. Afterwards, help with the cleanup.
Then go for a beer with the gang.
9. Join up! There is an arts organization out
there for you. These are the groups that
make things happen, so you can buy things,
learn about things, expose yourself, give
gifts, pass the wealth, challenge yourself,
sing like a wombat in heat, and volunteer
your time for the fun and friends that it
brings. Find it. Make it yours.
10. Pass this list along to as many people
as you can.
ARTiculate Summer 2002