ICASC has been conceived by Judith Marcuse Projects to support art for social change communities around the world. Practitioners and scholars, both in Canada and beyond, express a strongly-felt need for focused training, national and international networking, professional development and for research and archival work.
Emerging and experienced artists/practitioners have few opportunities to access concentrated, integrated learning and capacity-building in the field. Scholars speak of the need to ground their work in practice and community. There are innovative and transformative art and social change initiatives around the globe, but little infrastructure to support discipline-wide collaboration and knowledge-building.
ICASC will be the first centre in North America that integrates community engagement in art and social change, academic research and training, as well as professional development and global networking.
ICASC will have three main areas of operation:
1. Professional development and public outreach: workshops, networking sessions, conferences, lectures and dialogues, including knowledge-exchange for people already working in the field and those interested in it.
2. Diploma program: A three-semester program, with a core curriculum that includes dialogue and facilitation techniques, community outreach practices, project management and interning with arts for social change organizations in Canada and abroad, as well as discipline-specific training (theatre, dance, music, writing, visual, digital and media arts).
3. Research and resources: ICASC will develop and maintain a library and database of resources including short descriptions of international art for social change organizations, listings of funding sources, analyses of specific projects and calendars of international meetings and symposia. The Centre will facilitate a wide range of research projects.