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Common Field is a visual arts organizing network connecting contemporary, experimental, noncommercial artist-run and artist centered spaces and initiatives.
Common Field’s membership includes alternative art spaces, publications, digital exhibition venues, festivals, residencies, collectives, collaboratives, and individual organizers. These projects and spaces provide interdisciplinary and hybrid forms for art production, reception, and exchange.
Our members generate independent, responsive, grassroots, artist-centered cultures. They support artists, they connect artists with the public in intimate, experimental, and generative ways, and they are deeply involved in the shape and characters of the contexts where they work. Our members stimulate ideas, imagination, and innovation in their communities.
Many of our members create organizations that support artists and are artists themselves. Common Field explores the ways in which the practice of art organizing represents an integrated formation of practices that involve putting the work and creative process first.
Common Field is building a platform for sharing learning and exchange between these groups, and connecting them with related fields. Common Field's programs include convenings, research, membership resources, and advocacy. Our aim is to develop a more accessible and resourced field of visual arts organizations.
Common Field is pleased to share our first public Core Values Statement. In early 2017, our Council Communications Team set out to articulate a series of guiding principles informing our organizational work and development in practice. We are proud to share the results with our network members and the public. As a working document, we invite input and feedback from members, and will revisit values annually to ensure that they reflect the evolution of Common Field and the field at large.
*We are a network of artists' organizations and organizers who embrace interwoven roles as artists, curators, administrators, and organizers. We build from the rigor, experimentation, risk-taking, and responsiveness of contemporary artistic practices.
*We challenge dominant discourses and offer alternatives to the status quo. We put difficult ideas and imaginaries into the world. We support practices and projects that emerge from the ground up.
*We organize as a field in order to strengthen one another through collective action, shared information, and mutual support. We demonstrate equitable pay, self-determination, and healthy work environments.
We value difference in all its forms. We create structures, build platforms, and advance thinking that support diversity in identity, geography, history, orientation, perspective, and circumstance.
*We support organizing that generates new contexts for creation, circulation, and critique. We engage with changing social, political, and economic conditions, prioritizing the role of art organizing within these broader concerns.
*We use sharing, open communication, and problem solving as a way of modeling new forms of equity and power. We are transparent in our governance, decision making, communication, goals, and finances.
*We foster a culture of collaboration. We are equally committed to listening, to self-critique, to feedback, and to modification and calibration as part of our collective evolution.
*Creating broad public visibility for artist organizations and organizers
*Articulating the common practices and values of visual arts organizing
*Sharing histories and stories of the field
*Facilitating forums for convening, peer-to-peer knowledge, and exchange across geographies and communities
*Providing platforms for resources, tools, and advocacy
*Demonstrating responsive, diverse, and accessible approaches to creative production