From the Headquarters
 
 
Dear IA community,

I write to let you know how the IA team is doing and to share some resources that have been generously shared with us. IA staff is currently healthy and working remotely as California enters the second week of ‘shelter in place’ orders. Public schools are closed and, like many of you, we are doing our best to maintain schedules and Zoom meeting appointments as we preserve our health and sanity. The spring quarter at UC Davis will commence online after spring break, which is this week. Perhaps not unlike in your communities, the Davis streets are eerily empty but online conversations and resources are plentiful.

Our National Advisory Board meeting will take place as scheduled but online this May, as will our Organizing Institute for the Mellon Foundation funded Leading and Learning Initiative in June. In other words, despite the multiple stressors created by the COVID-19 virus, business is open and we are here for you.
Social distancing and ‘shelter in place’ orders have presented new challenges across the IA consortium where much of our work is public, collaborative, and community based in nature. Many of you have sent us inspiring resources to share with our diverse network of artists, scholars, teachers, students, and organizers as we navigate these challenging times. Here are a few items I’d like to draw your attention to:

- Combat Isolation: The IA Assessing the Practices of Public Scholarship (APPS) research collective was an early online responder with this great crowdsourced guide to combatting isolation and fear, Weaving Our We.

Imagine, Create, Play: IA’s Randy Martin Spirit Award recipient Ann Bastings also shared with us a number of ways to reach out to elders and one another with creativity, playfulness, and joy. Let Lockdowns Spur Creative Solutions in Care, Postcards - A Little Creative Care, Finding Connection During A Pandemic, Connect With Loved Ones Or Friends.

- Support Artists: We are critically aware of how hard this time is for artists, many of whom rely on public performances, exhibitions, and in-person collaborative work for their own incomes. We also know that artists are often exceptionally flexible and creative and are thankful for all of the artist-oriented resources shared with us. Please see here.

- What We Are Reading: I have enjoyed reading about ways to decrease stress around the pressures of online course formats, including this article by Deborah J. Cohan What Do We Need To Teach Now? who suggests that pausing, reflecting, and connecting with students is more important than mastering Zoom skills or fitting in every learning goal this term. Quoting Parker Palmer, Cohan suggests, “The connections made by good teachers are held not in their methods but in their hearts - - meaning heart in its ancient sense, the place where intellect and emotion and spirit and will converge in the human self.” Also in the theme of compassionate connection, I recommend PAGE Co-Director Frances Lee’s new piece on Why We Need Imperfect Apologies, equally timely as we are all prone to make a few mistakes in times of crisis.

- Organize: Organizers and activists in the IA network have shared important resources with us from tips on ‘Decolonizing Community Care’ to podcasts, and regional actions. See here.

Learn Together: Our recent sold out Teaching and Learning Circle (TLC) webinar on creating the just and inclusive campus with KerryAnn O’Meara and Kal Alston was a hit! Please stay tuned for IA’s May TLC with Jack Tchen and author Wayne Yang (aka la paperson) who will discuss the creative possibilities presented in A Third University Is Possible (2017), hosted in partnership with the Global Network.

We hold in our thoughts those who have lost work due to this public health crisis and the many healthcare, animal and plant care, grocery store, postal service, and other workers who continue to provide essential services and protect people and communities while risking exposing themselves to the virus. We also send our support to the communities facing xenophobia as a result of national leadership’s characterization of COVID-19’s spread, and those of you with compromised health and responsibilities caring for loved ones.
Sending you all a generous virtual hug and invitation to stay in touch. As always, never hesitate to reach out with suggestions, questions, ideas, or requests.

In community,

Erica Kohl-Arenas
Faculty Director, Imagining America
Associate Professor, American Studies, UC Davis
 
 
 
 
 
COVID-19 Related Resources
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Teaching and Learning Resources
 
 
 
Remote Community Engagement Activities (By Tessa Hicks Peterson, IA colleague and LLI national advisor)
 
 
Virtual Gatherings
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Membership and Community News
 
 
 
Applied Intercultural Arts Research (AIAR)
is accepting applications for Fall 2020
 
 
 
The AIAR is the newest of the Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs (GIDP) housed at the University of Arizona. It is geared towards promoting innovative research and public work at the intersections of the arts and other disciplinary fields.

AIAR is currently seeking exceptional MA and PhD students for Fall. In particular, we seek creative, interdisciplinary students interested in the arts who desire research flexibility in their graduate education as well as opportunities to apply their skills to real-world scenarios.
 
 
 
Call for Proposals for the Circus and its Others conference 2020
 
 
 
Launched in 2014, the Circus and its Others research project explores the ways in which contemporary circus artists and companies relate to difference in their practice. The third Circus and its Others conference will be held at the University of California, Davis, on November 12-15, 2020. As with the previous two conferences (Montréal 2016, Prague 2018), the conference will run alongside a contemporary circus festival, involving both indoor, ticketed programming and a free outdoor activities.

A particular focus of CaiO 2020 is the interdisciplinarity of circus research and practice, putting into play foci of openness and inclusion. How can our ongoing inquiry be enriched by engaging directly with scholars and practitioners working in a wide range of fields? For the 2020 conference, possible areas of inquiry might include, but need not be limited to: Circus and Subjectivity, Circus and Embodiment, Circus and Race, Circus and Animal Studies, Circus and Native American Studies/Circus and Indigeneity, Circus and Feminism, Circus and Queer Studies, Circus and Utopia, Circus and Science and Technology Studies, and Social Circus.
Revised Proposal Deadline: April 15, 2020.
 
 
 
 
 
 
News from the Field
 
 
 
How to Beat Coronavirus Capitalism
March 26 | 5 - 6:30pm EDT | Online Seminar
 
 
 
The current crisis is laying bare the extreme injustices and inequalities of our economic and social system. Join an online teach-in with Naomi Klein, Astra Taylor, and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, with a musical performance by Lia Rose.
Register through Eventbrite to receive a link to the videoconference on the morning of the event. Sponsored by Haymarket Books, The Leap, and Debt Collective.
 
 
 
Community Care and COVID-19 / Invitation to
Highlander Happy Hour
March 27 | 7pm EDT | Zoom Meeting
 
 
 
Highlander Research and Education Center will be hosting bi-weekly online gatherings for folks to come together to share their needs, strategies, and resources as the weeks unfold. Our next gathering is this Friday, March 27 at 7pm ET, a "Highlander Happy Hour" for folks over 21 to celebrate another week of resilience and sing together.
 
 
 
IA welcomes Phoebe Stein as the next President of the Federation of State Humanities Councils
 
 
 
Imagining America congratulates Phoebe Stein on her appointment as the next president of the Federation of State Humanities Councils. We also wish the best to Esther Mackintosh, the Federation's outgoing president. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Davis, CA and Surrounding Region
Regional News
 
 
 
California Arts Council Resources and Field Survey
 
 
 
The California Arts Council (CAC) has issued guidance for CAC grantees, compiled resources, and is conducting a survey for California artists impacted by COVID-19 related state and local public health orders. 
 
 
 
Request for Proposals: Outdoor Sculptures for West Davis Art Trail
 
 
 
A developer in Davis, CA is seeking outdoor sculptures to be installed along the 1.5 mile art and poetry trail that meanders through an oak tree arboretum on the property. The budget for ten pre-existing sculptures is $15,000 to $35,000 per artwork. The budget for one site-specific sculpture is $35,000 to $75,000.
The deadline to apply is March 24, 2020.
 
 
 
Join UC Davis Campus Rec on Facebook Live for a free exercise series you can do at home
 
 
 
UC Davis Campus Rec personal trainers are providing yoga, meditation, and mindfulness classes. Keep moving Aggies!
 
 
 
 
 
 
What We Are Reading
 
 
 
Frances Lee, Why We Need Imperfect Apologies 
 
 
 
"What we are owed and what we need to keep going are not always the same things." In their latest piece published in Sisu Magazine, PAGE Co-Director Frances Lee shares personal reflections on apologies when interpersonal harm occurs in community and activist spaces, and the difficulty in giving and receiving apologies.
 
 
 
Deborah Cohan, What Do We Need to Teach Now?
 
 
 
Many faculty members are so preoccupied with how to set up an online class that it's as if the big, important questions have gone missing, argues Deborah J. Cohan. We must also model for students how and what to prioritize.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Job Announcements
 
 
 
Director of Community Investments, San Francisco Arts Commission (San Francisco, CA)
 
 
 
The San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) is currently looking for a Director of Community Investments to oversee the SFAC’s grantmaking portfolio, community capacity building efforts, and the Street Artists Licensing Program. The Director will have knowledge and experience in promising practices and trends in arts grant-making, cultural equity, and the community arts field.
The deadline to apply is March 31, 2020.
 
 
 
Program Officer, Creative Economy, New England Foundation for the Arts (Boston, MA)
 
 
 
The New England Foundation for the Arts' (NEFA) Creative Economy program strengthens New England's creative community by supporting its visibility as well as its connection and knowledge building. The Program Officer, Creative Economy will coordinate the operations of the creative economy program’s processes and tools.
The deadline to apply is April 17, 2020.
 
 
 
 
 
Have your news featured in an upcoming
Imagining America newsletter.
Submit your content to:
connect@imaginingamerica.org.
 
 
 
The Imagining America consortium (IA) brings together scholars, artists, designers, humanists, and organizers to imagine, study, and enact a more just and liberatory ‘America’ and world.

Working across institutional, disciplinary, and community divides, IA strengthens and promotes public scholarship, cultural organizing, and campus change that inspires collective imagination, knowledge-making, and civic action on pressing public issues.

By dreaming and building together in public, IA creates the conditions to shift culture and transform inequitable institutional and societal structures.

(530) 297-4640 | imaginingamerica.org
207 Third St., Ste. 120 | Davis | California | 95616