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West Africa Training in December

Applications are open for our Art Action Academy in Guinea in December! West Africa Art Action Academy December 17 – 21, 2017 Applications Due November 20, 2017 (2pm GMT) En français OSIWA (Open Society Initiative for West Africa), C4AA (The Center for Artistic Activism) and Association Culturelle La Muse invite artists to apply to participate […]

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We’re Accelerating Saving Lives in Seattle

As part of our C4AA Accelerator Program, Steve Lambert is working in Seattle for the next few months, helping the YES to SCS coalition – check out their new site, yestoscs.org! Together we’re implement creative strategies and actions to help save lives in the opioid crisis by creating the Untied States first safe consumption space. […]

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Lambert talks C4AA at EYEO fest

Steve Lambert talked about the origins of the C4AA and tried to recruit the audience to be artistic activists at the 2017 EYEO Fest. You can watch a video of the whole talk including a summary of some of the work Lambert and the C4AA did with ASIJIKI at the 2016 AIDS Conference. (You met […]

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Why Artistic Activism?

Sometimes we’re asked, “What’s this artistic activism thing all about?” and “What’s the difference between artistic activism and regular activism?” and “Is this something you guys made up?” So, here’s a primer on Artistic Activism, and 9 reasons why we’re so into it.  You can also download the printable version of this booklet. 1 Artistic Activism […]

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New Training!

We have three trainings coming up in the next two weeks, which means three opportunities to up your creative activism game. Register quick, as this is a rare opportunity! Putting Your Skills To Work With For Social Change Steve Lambert and Patricia Jerido are doing a special online webinar with Creative Capital to give artists practical […]

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What Would Jesus Do? (as a Creative Activist)

By C4AA Co-Founder Stephen Duncombe My proselytizing here is of a political rather than religious nature. It isn’t the divine figure of Christ I am interested in but the purely historical Jesus, a radical Mediterranean Jewish peasant building a revolutionary movement two millennia ago. Jesus of Nazareth was an activist, and, judging by the two-thousand […]

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Artistic Action: Sex Worker Rights in Dublin

As part of our Arts Action Academy in December 2016 in Dublin, sex workers, artists and activists created and performed this creative action to raise awareness about, and fight against, laws that criminalize sex workers. All of this was conceived and implemented by the Academy participants in 24 hours as the last day of our intensive AAA training. […]

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5 Ways to Up Your Artistic Action Game

Here are 5 things you can do if you want to make change in the world: 1. Steal from the Past Borrow from successful creative movements (video). Make time to be inspired by others (check out Actipedia). 2. Know How to Manipulate Change Minds Use cognitive and behavioral science to understand how to make change starting […]

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How To Win Webinar #10: Make Your Meetings Inventive

Why a Webinar about Meetings? We’ve all been in a lot of action planning meetings lately, and some of them… are less than productive. This training is on how to lead Action Planning Meetings that don’t suck and are super creative and effective. Steve Lambert and Steve Duncombe give you tricks from their years of artistic […]

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How to Win Webinar #8: Change Minds

Our founders (The Artist! The Historian!) got deep into the Slap Chop, the Snuggie, and the Ginsu 2000! They shared what they’ve learned from infomercials (and some heavy communications theory) and revealed some simple tools to better understand audiences and communicate persuasively to people who don’t already agree. It’s free, as usual. And you can […]

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C4AA Fundamentals #7: Stay Hopeful & Avoid Burnout

In the Star Trek universe, Vulcans like Dr. Spock always think objectively and rationally. We’re not Vulcans. Human beings have a tendency toward self-deception – a trait that was a valuable part of human evolution and helped us survive over centuries. But fight or flight responses aren’t as needed or useful in everyday 2017. Steve […]

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Artistic Activism at the UN

Steve and Steve were at the United Nations this week, where they gave a presentation to the Arts and Culture Exchange of the UN Development Program. Ostensibly about “new communications strategies to sell old ideas, like the UN”, the Steve’s presentation introduced the audience of largely UN communications staff to artistic activism, and led them […]

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The Creators Project Recommends C4AA to Artists

The fantastic Creators Project just posted a new story on us: “Need More Activism in Your Art? Look No Further Than This Center.” A lot of artists might be thinking about how to incorporate more political activism into their practices right about now, and if you’re one of them then you’re in luck, because there […]

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How to Win! An Introduction…

“How to Win” is a work in progress by Stephen Duncombe, an academic, and Steve Lambert, an artist. We are both long-time political activists and both of us believe that using art and culture to transform the world is a good idea. But we are both haunted by the same question: How do we gauge the success of our projects? Hell, how do we even think about success when our goal is utopia?

This site is a place to explore this and related questions. It is an evolving repository for our research. While far from a finished product, we’re offering it as an open window into our process.

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Applications Are Open – Art Action Academy at The Queens Museum

Many artists want to create work that has a social impact. Unfortunately, organizing a successful social-change campaign is not often part of an artist’s education. The Art Action Academy (AAA), now in its second year at Queens Museum, helps socially-engaged artists make their work more impactful and better evaluate the effect of their work. This free workshop […]

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