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Mar 22, 2019

How to you pull people from different sectors together to build an unknown outcome in 3 days? Started with seeing tweets from France and then wanting to get involved in something I didn’t really know what it was. It is something you have to experience to appreciate. I went to MuseoMix in France 2012 and even though didn’t understand language, knew the framework was something that could really remix and shake up museums!

The key idea was allowing other sectors to have input. For our first year, it was a little complicated getting a community but I called in favors from friends and paid them with cake and smiles. I knew they would get something out of it. Up until our first day, there was confusion but with the framework that allows for growth with some guidance the community was able to achieve a level of re-thinking they did not think would be possible. Since then we have done another MuseomixUK and rebranded to Open Community Lab to branch out to health care and other sectors.

Video of Mar DIXON (Open Community Lab and MuseomixUK, UK) at the Conference Marketing de las Artes in Madrid 2016. 


Mar 14, 2019

Behind the ongoing programmatic and financial stresses being felt by nonprofit organizations at a time of economic uncertainty lays a vast territory of change in the sector as a whole. This means practitioners of all stripes unlearning a lot of things we have taken for granted, surfacing new assumptions to drive new thinking, and doing things differently across the board. Organizational innovation is challenging in a resource-strapped sector, but is now essential if field leaders are to successfully re-orient themselves to this new era. Fortunately, innovation can be systematized as a new organizational discipline, one that brings our best thinking together across traditional organizational and sector boundaries, and helps us make competitive use of our creative assets. Organizations across many countries are beginning to see that daring to risk a new approach can reveal new pathways to relevance and sustainability.

Video of the Conference Marketing de las Artes in Madrid 2016.


Jan 30, 2019

To stay relevant to changing communities, many arts organizations have been developing engagement programs — that is, programming designed to reach more and different people and involve them more actively in how art is made and experienced. While engagement efforts are often episodic or separate from an art organization’s core programming, in late 2013 a group of 10 arts nonprofits across California set out to make engagement central to their identities as part of the New California Arts Fund. To do this, they pursued transformations in their programmatic, organizational, and business models. This evaluation documents their achievements and challenges, and provides considerations for arts organizations and funders interested in reaching ethnically diverse and/or low-income communities.


Nov 08, 2018

This case study originally released in 2011 describes how the Steppenwolf Theatre Company has addressed the vexing problem of falling ticket subscription rates by developing deeper relationships with both subscribers and non-subscribers. To that end, it launched an experiment centered on promoting a dialogue among audience members and the artists about the process of creating theater. Audience members took part in nightly post-show discussions, attended special thematic events and were offered access to a rich selection of online content—including videos, podcasts, blogs, articles and slide shows—in which the artists talked about their work from a variety of perspectives.

The result: During a two-year period, many audience members who used to attend only one performance per season bought tickets to two, three or more shows. At the same time, the relationship-deepening initiatives had the added benefit of supporting high subscriber renewal rates.

This report is part of a set of case studies and reports looking at the efforts of arts organizations that received Wallace Excellence Awards to reach new audiences and deepen relationships with current ones.