How do we allow for access, diversity, equity, and inclusion in local arts, cultural institutions?Join this free webinar to find out

The Tampa Bay Area boasts a diverse population, which many times isn’t reflected in attendance at cultural organizations. How can arts institutions rectify this age-old issue, allowing for accessibility and inclusion in environments that are typically seen as exclusive to marginalized groups, you might ask? 

On Aug. 12 at 2 p.m., a Zoom webinar “Access, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (ADEI) in Cultural Organizations” hosted by the Arts Council of Hillsborough County and led by Dr. Antonio Cuyler, Director of the MA Program and Associate Professor of Arts Administration at Florida State University, aims to tackle these issues.
 
“Access is the cornerstone of the Arts Council’s Strategic Plan completed in 2020, and we will be continuing conversations about this over the next two years,” says Martine Collier, Executive Director of the Arts Council of Hillsborough County. “Dr. Cuyler is the consultant assisting the Arts Council in our ADEI initiatives. He did a session with the Arts Council Board a few months ago, and we are excited about his session specifically for cultural organizations.”
 
Over the course of an hour and a half, Dr. Cuyler will explain crucial ADEI terms while taking a deeper look at current systems in place at organizations in the Tampa Bay Area. Dr. Cuyler encourages a share-and-discuss method and says that anyone is welcome to reach out to him after the session if they have any more questions.
 
“My hope is that through this highly experiential session, it will give organizations a chance to see if their audiences, staff, board, and programming are reflective of Hillsborough County through census data or not, and what we can do about that,” Dr. Cuyler explains. “I’ve been so impressed with the Arts Council of Hillsborough County’s ADEI plan, and am really happy that they invited me back for this session. Hillsborough County is one of the two counties in Florida that has declared racism a public health crisis, and that declaration is what sets the stage for ADEI work to exist in Hillsborough County and for meaningful conversations that can impact people’s lives.”
 
Just because this webinar is specifically targeting arts and cultural organizations, it doesn’t mean that individuals won’t gain something from attending.
 
“The audience is reflection of community, and they can be very compelling advocates for ADEI by asking institutions to do more. For me, I believe arts and culture are the best paths for people to discover what it means to be human. People need a little more arts and humanity in their lives. We have to care enough about humanity and where humanity is going to address these social issues,” Dr. Cuyler says.
 
How to register for the Zoom webinar: Access, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Cultural Organizations.
 
To learn more about Dr. Antonio Cuyler.

 

Read more articles by Caitlin Albritton.

Caitlin Albritton is a freelance writer based in Tampa with a BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design and a MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art. When she's not looking at art throughout town, she can be found making it. You can keep up with her visual art on Instagram @caitlinalbritton or on her website. Visit her recent line of inlay “wearable paintings.”
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