Come work with us! We're hiring an Operations Manager.

Are you a detail-oriented, administrative professional? Our Operations Manager is the backbone of of the Living Arts office, ensuring the efficiency of financial and program administration. Responsibilities include bookkeeping and office management. Experience in Quickbooks preferred and prior bookkeeping and office support required. Apply by submitting a cover letter and resume by August 2 to Alissa Novoselick, Executive Director, at alissa@livingartsdetroit.org. Full job description at the link! 

http://www.livingartsdetroit.org/employment/

IMG_3980.jpg

A Peek Inside Out-of-School Arts

Teaching Artist Maggie McGuire works with teens on social media videos in our Out-of-School Arts Program. 

Teaching Artist Maggie McGuire works with teens on social media videos in our Out-of-School Arts Program. 

Summer classes are upon us here at Living Arts! That means babies clapping, six year-olds mixing paint, dance teams stretching their legs, and our teen artists working on awesome summer projects.

Students love to use our camera to investigate our classroom, take portraits of their friends, and showcase their artwork. The camera's memory card is overflowing with glimpses of the charming, friendly world through our student's eyes.

That's why, with the help of some of our senior teen artists, we created a short video showing some of the joyful moments from our out-of-school classes to celebrate.

The music is by student artist DeAryus Williams. He creates beats with Living Arts teaching artist and local phenom Sterling Toles. The Beatmaking class is a cornerstone of our out-of-school classes. It feels meaningful and great to be able to harness their work for our soundtrack!

Open Studio members Diamond and Bailey helped create the video's message and voiceover. Both have obvious star quality, but more than that they have questioning and focused minds. Diamond is learning how to edit footage as well, so we are sure to see more of her work in the future!

Living Arts is a real, vibrant network of young people, local artists, parents, educators, and community members. Each has their own viewpoint on the amazing creative work happening. We hope this summer you'll join us and add your own!

Ever Forward - Letting The Work Speak

Board Trustee Matt Nahan, MSW Photo by Julianne Lindsey

Board Trustee Matt Nahan, MSW

Photo by Julianne Lindsey

Evolving is hard in any sector but when it comes to fundraising practices in a nonprofit setting ,“If it ain’t broke don’t fix it” is often substituted for critical evaluations of success. 

For years Living Arts’ primary fundraising event was a breakfast. You know the one: food, inspiration, and an ask all packed into a tight one hour program. This model just didn’t feel right anymore. We needed more time to fully steep our supporters in an understanding of what arts-infused education means. Not to us as staff and trustees, but to the student empowered to rhyme their reality, the teacher forever infused with a creative approach, and the teaching artist learning daily from the pure creativity of their very own students. Building a discerning appreciation for our work would be an enormous victory for Living Arts.

Thirteen months ago we began exploring how much impact those single-hour events had created for our supporters and organization. After reviewing several years of successes, challenges, feedback, dollars raised, and staff hours spent, it became clear we had to make a change.

In order for our supporters to internalize how and why creativity is so critical to the minds of young people, we needed to afford them time and space in which to have the experience. Just a few weeks ago we put our theory to the test. This year’s Spark the Imagination event took place in the evening. Set in the majesty of Detroit’s Masonic Temple with drinks and hors d'oeuvres, we invited patrons to experience the breadth of our work through a more robust program.

We witnessed dancers bound for a national championship, precocious kindergarten animators, tales of personal growth, and rhymes fit for platinum. Every bit flowed from the souls of Detroit youth. Our very own teaching artists complemented the youth presence as they sang, played, danced and spoke with unrivaled clarity and passion. Each anecdote walked us into a school-based residency or an out-of-school classroom where we experienced what it felt like to encounter the changes and growth that take place in those spaces.

As the great Mahogany Jones ushered us towards the ask, the lights came up on a chapel full of palpable emotion. We had done it. Our patrons left that night with a true understanding of who Living Arts is and what this vibrant organization means for the City of Detroit.

The arts are imperative to the success of our culture and economy. We need creative institutions, creative thinkers and creative leaders. We need engineers, politicians, social workers, artists, and scientists with the creative foundation and ingenuity to lead us into territory uncharted by previous generations.

Educating, inspiring, and facilitating creativity in the minds of our most valuable and vulnerable members of society is an ultimate investment in the future of our world, our city, and our communities.

Join us.

Living Arts' Dance Collage performs at Spark the Imagination 2017. Photo by Julianne Lindsey

Living Arts' Dance Collage performs at Spark the Imagination 2017. Photo by Julianne Lindsey

Thank you, Living Arts!

I joined Living Arts nine years ago, after contributing to “El Arte Alliance” as a teaching artist, program manager, and then director, for twelve years prior. “El Arte” was a passionate coalition of schools, teachers, arts organizations and artists which became Living Arts’ school-based arts education division when El Arte merged with Living Arts in 2008. The merger was based on the hope that re-inventing Living Arts would ensure the long-lasting positive impact of both El Arte’s school-based programs and Living Arts’ out-of-school programs.  Our hope has definitely come to fruition!