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In Community, and With Love

Common Field is closed as of December 31, 2022. This website and its content will remain online through April 30, 2023. We encourage you to browse and download any content you would like to access beyond that date.

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December 19, 2022

Common Field has always been rooted in the work that came before us. Our predecessors believed that artists and their work are critical to dismantling oppressive systems to create more equitable, diverse and imaginative spaces for our futures. Inspired by this long history of advocacy and organizing work among artists, Common Field was created to provide a national framework for gathering and amplifying these efforts across the field.

For close to a decade, Common Field’s work was based on a direct but expansive mission to “connect, support and advocate for the artist-centered field by providing a network for independent arts organizations and organizers.” As our membership grew to 900 over the last 7 years, we learned so much about the wide range of needs and possibilities across the field. Our convenings, local meet-ups, special projects and grant programs aimed to invest in building resources and connections for new possibilities. We hope Common Field’s life and work provided the field with this support and now, in our closing, with lessons and learnings to inform the path ahead.

Common Field is honored to have played a role in the larger ecosystem of our field and as we close, we are excited and hopeful for the future because it will be shaped by this community. The work of our Network inspired our founding, our programs and an ending that we can look beyond knowing that the work of the future is in process today.

We thank you for this.

To support the possibilities ahead, Common Field closes today with the launch of our final project, Common Work: Learnings for the Future from Common Field! This four-part series pairs podcast episodes with commissioned essays around four themes: Foundations, Common Field in Practice, Community Building is Culture, and Sustainability for the Future. Contributors include artists and leaders across the sector, as well as former and outgoing Common Field staff and board members.

We are pleased to share podcast episodes and essays for Foundations and Common Field in Practice with you today (available here)! Episode 1, Foundations, features dialogues about the history of artist organizing with Roberto Bedoya and Sheetal Prajapati and the work of founding organizations with An Duplan and James McAnally, paired with “Governance though Sunsetting” an essay by Common Field board members Sarah Williams and Jackie Clay. Episode 2, Common Field in Practice, offers learnings and reflections on national organizing from former Common Field team members and is paired with “Who is Common Field’s Network For?” an essay by former staff member Ikram Lakhdhar. Transcriptions of audio episodes are included with paired essays. This project was produced in partnership with Jack Straw Cultural Center. You can find an overview of the project and a list of all contributors for the full series here.

Keep up-to-date on the launch of episodes and essays for Community Building is Culture and Sustainability for the Future and our organizational timeline in early 2023 on Instagram or Facebook.

Thank you for being part of this Network and for the work ahead.

In community and with love,
Common Field’s Closing Team

Mars Avila, Producer, Programs and Special Projects
Kristel Baldoz, Administrative Manager and Board Treasurer
Jackie Clay, Board Secretary
E. Maude Haak-Frendscho, Convening Program Director
Eunsong Kim, Board Member
Sheetal Prajapati, Executive Director
Chris Tyler, Associate Director, Communications and Operations
Sarah Williams, Board President

P.S. If you need to get in touch with Common Field, we’ll be monitoring Common [​at​] commonfield.org through April 2023.