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Art and upheaval - William Cleveland

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Art and upheaval - artists on the world's frontlines
William Cleveland
Paperback / softback
New Village Press
UK Publication Date

Citizen artists successfully rebuild the social infrastructure in six communities devastated by war, repression and dislocation.
Author William Cleveland tells remarkable stories from Northern Ireland, Cambodia, South Africa, United States (Watts, Los Angeles), aboriginal Australia, and Serbia, about artists who resolve conflict, heal unspeakable trauma, give voice to the forgotten and disappeared, and restitch the cultural fabric of their communities.
Art can be a powerful agent of personal, institutional and community change. The stories in this book have valuable implications for artists, academics, educators, human service providers, philanthropists, and community leaders throughout the world. The artists documented in the book have generated new technologies for advocacy, organizing, peacemaking, healing trauma and the rebuilding of community. Creativity is our most powerful capacity, and it can mitigate and heal our most destructive tendencies.

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William Cleveland is the founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Art and Community.

"Cleveland's writing about artists in far corners pulling together and creating moral centres for healing and political reconciliation is sometimes ponderous but couldn't be more relevant now that we have a global leader in Barack Obama who has made community-organising the centrepiece of his presidency. It may be that we have outlived the long period of ethical (and aesthetic) neutrality in our culture, now that politics is finally catching up with art."
Suzi Gablik, Resurgence Magazine

"Cleveland gets down to gritty detail by documenting the censorship, government-sponsored arson, and institutional apathy that have threatened these outposts, as well as the specific historic moments that sparked them. All told, these are success stories against the odds."
Josie Rawson, Public Art Review

"For some readers, this book could be used as a how-to manual for organizing a variety of arts projects responding to crisis, but for a much broader audience, Art and Upheaval will serve to validate the importance of artists working outside artistic institutions. In Cleveland's words, these artists "… are doing this to rally or to bring order, to educate and inspire, to entertain, to heal, but most of all, to tell the story?the hidden story, the story denied."
John Kreidler, Grantmakers in the Arts Reader: Volume 20, No. 1, Spring 2009

"Each of the groups Cleveland profiles started small, but grew to provide essential safe space where communities could come together and heal. Community art offered a way forward: a chance to acknowledge and confront painful histories, to begin to resolve current conflicts, and to imagine a different kind of future."
Brooke Jarvis, Yes! Magazine

"Through the eloquent telling of stories of ordinary people daring to speak out, fight back and take action, Bill Cleveland shows us the most precious gift innate in all of us, the power to imagine and create. The act of creation can heal our deepest wounds and turn crisis into opportunity."
Lily Yeh, artist and founder, Barefoot Artists and The Village of Arts and Humanities

"Art and Upheaval turns a world eager for hope and good news onto the fact that everyday around the world there are artists daring to speak truth (and beauty!) to power in ways that build understanding and reconciliation where there were previously only hardened hearts and ruin."
David Griffith, author, A Good War is Hard to Find: The Art of Violence in America

"Another insightful set of observations from a master storyteller. In his new book Cleveland deepens our sense of how human imagination and creativity sit next to upheaval in the ecology of meaning."
Jennifer Williams, artist, founder, The Center for Creative Communities

Keyword Index
Artists and community.|Art and social conflict.|Arts and society.
Country of Publication
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