Community Engagement Strategies: First Research, Now Action

Fleisher Art Memorial is implementing new communication strategies meant to bridge the gap between its artistic programming and the rapidly evolving South Philadelphia community in which it is located. Fleisher attracts participants who reside mainly outside its neighborhood, and its offerings largely remain invisible to the organization’s surrounding communities, which include Latinos, Southeast Asians, and African-Americans. Multicultural specialist Donna Walker-Kuhne—author of Invitation to the Party: Building Bridges to Arts, Culture, and Community, and a noted expert on audience diversification—is working with Fleisher to develop relationships with these growing communities, in order to inform and enhance Fleisher’s artistic programming. At the core of the project is a group of trained community liaisons called “FAMbassadors,” who advise Fleisher on the creative needs of local residents. Fleisher uses the FAMbassadors’ feedback to develop workshops rooted in culturally specific art forms and Web materials that serve as entry points for potential program participants, including an online video course catalog. This project is providing new opportunities for interaction with South Philadelphia communities, and is transforming Fleisher into a more welcoming and accessible space for its neighbors.1

1
Management grants, through the Philadelphia Cultural Management Initiative, were awarded through 2013 following which a new funding category, Advancement grants, was introduced to support substantial long-term organizational development. Learn more>>.
Collaborators & Colleagues

Eric Tschanz is the president and CEO of Powell Gardens in Kingsville, Missouri.

Grants & Grantees

Musicopia brings music education into schools throughout the Philadelphia region, with over 100 teaching artists presenting over 700 programs each year.

Grants & Grantees

Bristol Riverside Theatre is a vibrant, engaged community theater in the northeast reaches of the Philadelphia area.

Grants & Grantees

Located in Chinatown North in Center City Philadelphia, Asian Arts Initiative fosters social change through art.

Grants & Grantees

In 2003 the Center awarded Pew Fellowships to 12 Philadelphia-based artists, and grants to 63 dance, music, theater, and visual arts organizations and practitioners in the greater Philadelphia region.

Dr. Elizabeth Cromely leads participants through Cliveden’s 1950s-era kitchen and discuss the historical context of 1950s architecture.

The PHS Pop Up Garden is now welcoming visitors to experience the transformation of the Viaduct Rail Park at 10th and Hamilton Streets.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Steve Zeitlin is the founding director of City Lore, an organization dedicated to the preservation of New York City’s—and America’s—living cultural heritage.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Dr. Emil Kang serves as executive director for the arts at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, a post created in 2005 to help unify and elevate the performing arts at the university.

Grants & Grantees

Philadelphia Mural Arts Advocates established a new curatorial residency program that looks to the future of mural-making.

Opera Philadelphia presented the East Coast premiere of Tan Dun’s 2002 opera, which uses elements of Japanese and Chinese tea ceremonies to tell a tragic love story.

Grants & Grantees

Lonnie Graham is a visual artist and a 2002 Pew Fellow.