2. Choose a project that plays on the imagination of your chosen community
What does you chosen community care about? What are their concerns? One Sydney-based workshop, ‘Welcome Studio’, has identified that their target community - people from refugee backgrounds - want to build connections with the new Australian community they find themselves in. So, ‘Welcome Studio’ have helped people of refugee backgrounds teach art workshops. In this way, they can share their culture and build new connections.
Meet Hilin, the teacher of our Persian Felt Animals class at @workshopaus. Hilin arrived from Iran to Australia in 2013. As an art and craft-maker in Iran she earned an income from her art practice so she could contribute to her university fees and support her family. Hilin works across a range of materials and craft styles, much of which represents traditional techniques from her home country such as artworks made with wheat stems, felt toy animals and pearl beading. Hilin has always taken creative inspiration from her mother in Iran and many of the techniques used in her work are learnt directly from her. Join her class this Thursday 19th at 6pm (link in bio)
3. Is the project accessible?
Is taking part in the project accessible to all in your subset? There’s not much point hosting workshops for persons with physical disabilities in their twenties at a local studio, if there is no wheelchair accessibility. Less visible accessibility factors - such as computer literacy (e.g. you’re asking people to submit something online), or english literacy (e.g. you’re asking for feedback) may also be a factor.
Think about the skills needed, the equipment that needs to be used, and the sensibilities of the participants.
4. Reach out to people
Identify the best approach to reach the people you want to target - make the project not only accessible in its practice, but in its communication. Reach out early, and to the right interest groups.
I feel that this step can be the pitfall of many arts projects. Yes, you can start a beautifully crafted Instagram hashtag, but are your targeted communities actually on Instagram? If not, #getoffthegram.