March 5 Status Update

Good Morning!


  1. The applications are ready for artists and authentic/expert voices.  We have changed the date for authentic voice app deadline to June 1 but understand that I am using our authentic voice teammates on grant apps and I need at least a sentence description ASAP to help strengthen our applications.  Apps are also here:
  2. We are overwhelmed and need help.  Please post this on your social networks. Thanks.

Interns/Mentees Needed. Paid Positions

Art To Change the World (a Minneapolis non-profit) is organizing for their first event. See. Say. DO: Art To Change The World Oct 5-15. We are looking to hire three intern/mentees. We are a collective and we are looking for help in all aspects of the organization, promotion, staging, and presenting of our first event. Direction will be provided. The intern/mentee would become a member of Art To Change The World (free) and if they are a social practice artist – will be eligible apply to join the show. This is an incredible experiential opportunity. Salary and hours to be determined. Read more and get application:



  1. If you would like to see what is happening  at various meetings…. Go here for minutes and updates:

Authentic voice info again:

What is an Authentic/Expert Voice?

We have added the word “authentic” to help explain the concept of what we need for “expert” voices in our event.  We might also call these integral team mates  a “primary source voice.”

It has been my experience that the general public has a bias towards artists and their “intelligence.”  My original concept was that BOTH (or all- I have two authentic/expert voices) of the team members learn from the other team members.   In my recovery project, I will have an author who is in recovery from addiction and a treatment center health worker.  I am going for a Hazelden employee for maximum impact.  I have already learned from my authentic/expert voice. She indicated when people ask her if  she is  “in recovery” all she can manage to respond is, “Today, I’m alright.”  I am rethinking my Recovery topic name. Personally, I have experienced addiction (food) and with my friends and family. I am sure my loved ones are sick of people treating them like it is all over-that they are recovered.  I now know that Today- they are alright.

I give this personal example as a way to illustrate that I am of the opinion that the more I know, the more I know how little I know.  I believe that our “authentic voices” – people who live in the worlds of our topics will bring a first person informed perspective to our projects AND we may bring a new way of thinking to THEIR world.  I hope that we all, and our message, will be richer for the dialogue.

Our biggest challenge, I predict, will be for us, and our team mates, to understand that we may want to go beyond preparing a lecture.  In my world of education, this “expert/teacher centered” approach is called intructivism.  The teacher stands up and lectures.  Research shows this has very little impact.  What I hope for all of us is to consider taking a constructivist  approach. The entire team of artist, authentic/voice(s) AND the audience will all CONSTRUCT the new knowledge we discover by synthesizing ALL our data streams together. My rule of thumb is to keep my “data dump”, as I call it, to no more than 1/3 of my time with the target audience. This approach is incredibly empowering, effects change and takes the pressure off the teacher/leader.  You and your team build the framework and the participants fill it in. This does not mean the artists are not in the lead position with the final say. This is YOUR project!

You might want to use the following for inspiration as you design your project:


  1. Collect new data from credible sources
  2. Process that data alone and collaboratively ( I do this on my discussion boards with essential questions)
  3. Present your reflections/findings – which in our case will be our team projects (art!!), performances and workshops.

You might want to develop a few Essential Questions with your authentic voice which point your audience in the direction you want them to go.  They also always help ME get focused! Mine might be something like the following for a middle school audience:

1.Does art have to be beautiful to be good art?

2.What is social justice art? Why do you think artists make social justice art?

3.What do you know about the connection between mood disorders and addiction?

  1. Can addicts just say , “no”?

If you choose to offer a workshop, design an activity which engages EVERYONE in the dialogue, creating an object (optional) and most importantly, with the goal that ALL participants will go away with a positive action item to DO. What’s Your Issue: See something DO something,

Frankly, I have been teaching for over 40 years and this constructivist approach is the only reason I am still in the game.  I would never think of myself as an ”expert.”  I always tell my students, “This is what I know so far. Let’s build on this data with research and YOUR knowledge and experience. “ Out with The Sage on the Stage and in with the Guide on the Side!!

Does this make more sense?  What do you think?  Thanks for helping me articulate my dream with more clarity.