Open Engagement has convened a national consortium of institutions and organizations dedicated to supporting socially engaged art. Representatives from A Blade of Grass, California College of the Arts, Oakland Museum of California, Queens Museum, and University of Illinois at Chicago School of Art & Art History will work closely with the Open Engagement core team to shape and situate the itinerant conference.
Each year will focus on a singular theme, exploring major issues at play and at stake in socially engaged art. The themes and sites for the next three conferences are: POWER in Oakland in 2016, JUSTICE in Chicago in 2017, and SUSTAINABILITY in New York in 2018. Annual programming will be chosen from an open call for proposals, under the direction of an appointed curator from the region and selection committee comprised of national consortium members alongside local partners, artists, educators, students, and other invested community members and organizations.
Since its founding in 2007, Open Engagement has grown significantly each year, widening its scope and reach, as well as serving as an important site of professional development and education around socially engaged art. With the formation of this consortium and next three conference locations confirmed, OE aims to create a site of care and dialogue for practitioners, institutions, and communities.