Food for Thought

doing not just thinking The creative case for diversity - plus cartoons of people and the words diversity, creative case and artA different kind of post today – the visual evaluation of a project I worked on earlier in the year.

It’s from Food for Thought – a series of curated meals to discuss diversity and the arts, specifically the Creative Case, Arts Council England’s innovative approach placing difference at the centre, rather than at the edge. See what you think and let me know.

If you want the audio described version – click here.

If you want a version without the background music – click here.

And if you want a transcript – email me directly – joverrent (at) mac.com

Phew!

 

A is for activism: activism with a variety of typefonts

an abstract image in different 50's style - circles and colours, blue, mustard, red, yellow, pink...I was challenged this week for not being an activist. The idea of ‘difference being different’ was ridiculed:

“Jo Verrent said different is delicious. Excuse me? Vodka and tonic is delicious. Chocolate; oral sex; toothpaste. Different is sheer shit if you’re the one who’s not the same and is constantly reminded of the fact in no uncertain terms.”

They’re not wrong. I don’t disagree with them. But when I say ‘difference is delicious’ it’s part of the struggle to make things better; it’s not a way of accepting the status quo. Continue reading

Energy: the benefits of taking to your bed for arts sake

a completed energy map - a sheet, split into two across the middle - points of high energy are placed across the top, and low energy across the bottom. The idea is that you map your week - monday to sunday across the sheet.How much energy have you got today?

I remember when Sarah Pickthall and I set up Sync, a leadership development programme for disabled people in the cultural sector, one of the first things we asked people to do was to map their energy – when did people feel most able to deliver work, when were they exhausted; what fed them and charged them up and equally what drained them, made them less able to function fully. Continue reading

Balancing the scales of privilege and responsibility

An old fashioned pair of weighing scales, one side up higher than the other.We don’t talk much in the UK about privilege. We talk about justice, access and equality; about diversity and difference. We discuss statistics and metrics, programmes and principles, but we don’t talk much about privilege.

So what is it?

Privilege is a way of framing issues surrounding social inequality, focusing as much on the advantages that one group accrues from society as on the disadvantages that another group experiences. Continue reading