ArtsWeb Pilot: Nearing Completion

SVCREATES, in partnership with Community Vision (CV) and with support from Rainin Foundation, piloted a new bay area arts hub called ArtsWeb in Santa Clara and Alameda Counties from 2020-2022 . This pilot explored new, more equitable and accessible ways of building capacity in our local arts ecosystems.

ArtsWeb Pilot was designed as a decentralized, flexible, relationship-based service hub that connects professional, community-based artists, arts groups, creative entrepreneurs, and free-range artists with business service providers in their communities while providing a forum for sharing and mutual aid. 

The pilot project relied on a Theory of Change noted below and three critical design elements: 1) an informed local strategy to stay rooted in the unique needs of each community; 2) the aggregation of new and existing data to more fully map the breadth of the local arts sector; and 3) and an Arts Business Navigator (ABN) who will strengthen the ecosystem through relationship-building. 

As ArtsWeb continues to take root and grow, the ecosystem of participants will multiply by providing services in a responsive way, driven by communities’ self-determination; participants will engage more efficiently by reducing administrative burdens,  and the local economy will increase its ability to financially support more Creatives and Providers. Reliable, long-term financial sustainability gives artists the nourishment and spaciousness they need to amplify their messages and expedite social change by elevating the artist’s voice for civic change.

During the two year pilot and testing period, ArtsWeb engaged in a community-based business development managed by  two Arts Business Navigators, Tanuja Bahal of Santa Clara County and Zakiya Harris of Alameda County, with guidance from a Steering Committee and two separate Regional Advisory Councils.   In January 2021, we launched our initial pilot cohorts to prototype several versions of the ArtsWeb business model to match artists, arts groups, and other creatives with business services and providers to advance mission and goal and unleash creativity.  We designed a  database  to build our roster of business service providers to serve our arts ecosystem and to begin to map the network of local creatives and providers.  

After assessing and evaluating our two-year fully-funded pilot, the most effective and successful elements of ArtsWeb are being  embedded in local arts service organizations in each county.   Our deepest thanks to the many individuals and organizations who participated in the pilot and contributed time and expertise.

Theory of Change

This innovative wealth-building strategy based on community cultural wealth in unmapped creative economies presents a catalytic opportunity for funders to stabilize artists and unleash creativity, the exact creativity needed now to help us transcend divisions and reconnect us with our humanity. Click here to read more about the theory of change.

ArtsWeb Steering Committee:

Kerry Adams Hapner – Director of Cultural Affairs, City of San Jose Office of Cultural Affairs
Roberto Bedoya – Cultural Affairs Manager, City of Oakland
Connie Martinez – Chief Executive Officer, Silicon Valley Creates
Esperanza Pallana – Director of Strategic Initiatives, Community Vision
Omar Rodriguez – Owner, Kooltura Marketing
Ted Russell – Director of Arts Strategy & Ventures, Kenneth Rainin Foundation
Shelley Trott – Chief Program Officer, Kenneth Rainin Foundation
Tyese Wortham – Community Arts Stabilization Trust

ArtsWeb Regional Advisory Council – Santa Clara County

Mel Day – Artist
Leigh Henderson – Managing Director, Teatro Vision
Arlene Biala – Arts Program Manager, City of San José
Omar Rodriguez – Owner, Marketing Director, Kooltura Marketing
Erin Salazar – Founder, Executive Director, Local Color
Mattie Scariott – Director, Poppy Jasper International Film Festival
Anne To – Artist
Daniel Wood – Composer, hornist, founder of Quadre

ArtsWeb Regional Advisory Council – Alameda County

Ashara Ekundayo – Chief Curator, Art as First Responder
Tyese Wortham – Director of Community Engagement, Community Arts Stabilization Trust (CAST)
Gregory Jackson – Equal Justice Works Fellow, Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC)
Naima McQueen – Executive Director, Alliance for Community Development (ACD)
Ndidi Okwelogu – Black Economic Network (BEN)
Carolyn Johnson – Executive Director, Black Culture Zone (BCZ)
Byron Johnson – Capacity Building Initiative Officer, East Bay Community Foundation (EBCF)

Curious to learn more? 

For more information on ArtsWeb work in Alameda County and BlacSpace Cooperative in Oakland, please contact Zakiya Harris.

For more information on SVCREATES’ ongoing ArtsWeb Santa Clara County work, please contact Alyssa Erickson or explore SVCREATES website to read how ArtsWeb model and values have been embedded into SVCREATES capacity building programs.