Arts and Social Change Symposium: An Open Dialogue

Photo by Robert WadeThe Arts and Social Change Symposium coming up October 12 and 13th with Seattle's 4Culture and other state and city institutions looks interesting and germaine not only to culture in the Pacific Northwest. I think it's important to a wider, national and global view of art's role in contemporary life.

I'm thinking of everything from Pussy Riot and Ai Weiwei's courageous stands for freedom of speech and human rights to ecologically inspired work like Buster Simpson's Beckoning Cistern and Konstantin Dimopoulos's Blue Trees.

Art at this moment is more important, relevant, active, volatile and full of potential to effect change as well as remind us of our expressive humanness than at any time in recent memory at the same time that support for it is challenged and eroding.

Whether or not I can attend this symposium I'm glad to live in a town where art is valued, pushed, kneaded, kicked around, tossed up, questioned and challenged to reach new audiences and explore potentially far-reaching possibilities.