Art Works Blog

A motorcycle accident leads to the amputation of a leg. If it happens in, say, Washington, DC, the hospital might offer several choices of prosthetic limbs, most likely covered by insurance. If, however, you live in a poorer country where the average income is $4 a day or even less, the options are...
The above quote is from Chairman Chu's remarks at " Creative Placemaking: The Role of Arts in Community Development ," which took place yesterday in Washington, DC. Held in part to celebrate the launch of our new book How to Do Creative Placemaking: An Action-Oriented Guide to Arts in Community...
When a friend visiting from Philadelphia compared Whitesburg, Kentucky, to Stars Hollow, all she got from us was a blank stare. Turns out Stars Hollow is the setting of Gilmore Girls : a small idyllic town, rural and intimate, yet diverse and open-minded. When our friend arrived in Whitesburg—a...
A round-up of inspirational quotes to motivate us to work on our art.
“Don't worry about what a poem means,” says poet Joy Harjo. “Do you ask what a song means before you listen? Just listen.” Harjo’s book of selected poems, How We Became Human , is one of the recent additions to the NEA Big Read library, along with two other books of poetry: Citizen by Claudia...
There may be no higher tribute to the role of working artists in the public imagination than a term that has awakened the interest of labor analysts over the last few years: gig economy. The description is no longer limited to itinerant entertainers; it includes a reportedly growing sector of the...
The Cloud Horse Art Institute is a non-profit arts organization located on the Pine Ridge reservation in South Dakota. Founded in 2001 by Tilda Long Soldier St. Pierre and now co-run with her husband Mark St. Pierre, the Institute’s programs in traditional Lakota folk arts including hide tanning,...
For Tanaya Winder , writing poetry is about much more than language. It's about what that language can do. As she put it when describing her first recognition of that potency, she realized that "words had the power to hold people in the way they needed to be held." Winder--who is from the Southern...
"Once you join an amateur group, you are a member of a great fraternity, whose purpose is the most dignified one you can imagine: to inspire one another and unite in building up a creation that is greater than one individual’s deeds." — Paul Hindemith, composer, in A Composer’s World Community...
Tis the season to be thankful. We’re thankful that we can dip into the NEA Big Read library to find something stirring to read while we digest the turkey (and cranberry sauce and stuffing and, well, you get the picture). In this spirit of gratitude we asked several of our Big Read authors to tell...

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