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Field News February 2018

Looking Back, Moving Forward

2017 was an incredible year of major shifts, evolutions and growth for Common Field. In 2017 Common Field officially became a 501c3 non-profit organization with the goal of ensuring stability and continuity for the organization. The national advisory Council transitioned to become the inaugural Board of Directors including Dana Bishop-Root, Elizabeth Chodos, Courtney Fink, Matthew Fluharty, Anne Focke, Deana Haggag, sharon maidenberg, Nat May, James McAnnally, Cameron Shaw, Aurora Tang, and Martha Wilson. Courtney Fink became the organization’s first Executive Director, and is working alongside part-time staff members Amanda Choo Quan and Hannah Grossman to carry out the organization's programs and support the network. The organization has set down its roots in Los Angeles and established a local office. Additionally, a core values statement was published, a new website was launched with an expanded online infrastructure for the 700+ member network, and more than 250 new organizations and organizers joined the network in 2017. Common Field organized our largest national Convening to date in Los Angeles in November 2017 with 450 people in attendance using an expanded form giving voice and authorship to many people throughout the network.

New Website, New Look!

You might have noticed that commonfield.org, as well as our identity, looks different. We worked with New York-based Wkshps (formerly Project Projects) to build a site that is functional, interactive, and beautiful—complete with a new forum, map, listings, and many more resources. We’ve elaborated on the making of the new site in an Art + Education announcement published on February 13th. We love hearing from you, so send your feedback to hello [​at​] commonfield.org.

Machine Project x Common Field Toolkits:
Starting your Own Art Space, Running a Workshop, and Curating Events

Common Field has partnered with Los Angeles-based founding member organization Machine Project to publish a series of toolkits that might be helpful for others in the field. In early 2018, Machine Project announced its closure after 15 years of experimentation. Machine hopes their groundbreaking work will inspire you to keep trying to get away with it all. Threeey have put together 3 comprehensive tool kits that are available for FREE download on Common Field and Machine Project websites. Check them out, and share them widely!

2017 Los Angeles Convening Archive and Resources

We’ve made some brand new additions to the 2017 Los Angeles Convening archive, including Field Perspectives the pdf—a complete, digital publication housing all essays commissioned from arts publications in preparation for last year’s Convening, and a video showing Convening highlights.

There’s more material available as well: 2017’s program, livestreams of main sessions and opening remarks, notes from 30 breakout sessions, and photos from the weekend. Take a look at the entire 2017 Convening archive here.

Field Grant Reports

Field Grants provide grants of $500-1000 to support projects that generate exchange, connection, and thinking on arts organizing. projects and practices. Each grantee creates a report documenting their process. Stay tuned for 2018 Field Grant deadlines in the upcoming weeks!

In the meantime, read about grantees Rivet (Spring, 2017), who created a 10-step Guide to Applying for Things, and Women’s Center for Creative Work x Trans.lation Vickrey Meadow (Winter 2016). WCCW hosted Carol Zou as an artist-in-residence, sharing lessons learned from the affordable housing struggle in Dallas, TX with Los Angeles-based groups. Zou also published CULTURE is CAPITAL, a poetic zine. Read more.