The Active Partnership

Co-presented with the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) as part of FIAF’s 2013 Crossing the Line Festival

Antonio Sergio Bessa, Director of Curatorial & Education Programs, The Bronx Museum of the Arts

Maria Canela, community organizer, participant in Immigrant Movement International

Bill Adair, Director of Exhibitions & Public Interpretation, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, Philadelphia

Mary MattinglyArtist


Left: Plant Justice workshop facilitated by artist Jason Gaspar, at Immigrant Movement International, a project by Tania Bruguera. Right: Waterpod™ Project, by Mary Mattingly and collaborators. Photo by Mary Mattingly.

  • How can institutions better support socially engaged art?
  • Who has a stake in developing and supporting socially engaged art projects?
  • How can the relationships between artists, communities, funders and institutions provide a lens for understanding what support for socially engaged art should look like?
  • How does the visibility provided by institutional support affect the form and outcome of a socially engaged art project?
  • How can communities be equal stakeholders in the processes of socially engaged projects?

Artists who create socially engaged art projects often partner with institutions as a way of gaining support and funding. But these projects have specific needs that go beyond the traditional artist-institution relationship, oftentimes changing the notion of the art project as well as the institution. What does this relationship look like and how can active and effective partnerships be better envisioned for socially engaged art projects? How can the participating communities be better empowered to truly impact the practice of socially engaged art making? This panel will ask questions of different stakeholders, considering the perspectives of artists, communities, funders and institutions to form a dialogue around optimum ways of addressing and responding to each of their needs.

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