arts management

The sweetest successes are deliberate

I recently began to notice that working backwards is a vital practice in my career as an arts manager and consultant. Early on, I learned never to enter a classroom without identifying a desired objective, having a plan for achieving that objective, and having measures at hand to prove that the objective was indeed achieved. Thus, at the end of a lesson, it was clear whether or not the objective had been achieved.

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Do We Exist to Create or Share, and Who Is the End User?

In the arts, there are two key phenomena: the creation and the experiencing of the art. 

Artists are typically focused mainly on the creation of the art, and (usually) less so on the experiencing of the art. Their primary work is to transmute the pure creative potential of their vision into something more concrete, into a more tangible form. And often, as in the visual and performing arts, that form is intended to be shared, to be experienced by others.

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There are no right answers.

The act of creating art involves risk, experimentation, and learning. There are no right answers, just vision, creativity, expression, and in some cases, connection. In arts management, the same applies. There are no right answers to the business of the arts. And yet, many of the artists, arts managers, and boards seeking our help appear to be looking for the magic formula that makes everything OK, that makes everything easy and keeps it going that way so we can focus on the fun stuff -- the art.

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