Chattanooga will host a national artists workshop series. (Photo: Ashley Day)

A new workshop series called “Artists as Change Agents within Complexity” will be held in Chattanooga after the city was chosen a pilot location.

The program is facilitated by EmcArts, a national arts service organization that works alongside individuals, organizations and communities as they tackle their most complex challenges.

EmcArts will choose 10 artists to participate in the program through an application process. The first sessions will be Aug. 11-12 and the second Sept. 29-30.


Applications are due by July 9. 

The series will help local artists develop their artistic practice “a central methodology for systemic change in their local community.”

Local nonprofits The Chattery and Chattanooga Workspace have teamed up to facilitate and organize the workshops series. Funding of the program is provided by the Kresge Foundation and the Lyndhurst Foundation.

From the release:

Through its research, EmcArts has identified a core set of five capabilities that are vital to making real, long-lasting change in complex situations, and which are also inherent to many artistic processes. The workshops will orient artists to the five capabilities, and explore the use each artist can make of them in a community context.

“Our aim is to facilitate an exchange and dialogue with local artists in order to find and develop the meeting points between their existing practices and these complexity-related capabilities,” says EmcArts Senior Program Manager Liz Dreyer.

In the Workshop Series, artists and EmcArts faculty will together explore how the five capabilities can be developed and consolidated among champions of change in local communities, as assets they can carry forward with them in their work. Each artist who participates in the program will receive a $250 stipend for each day (total $1,000).