We here at Arts Diplomacy Network sometimes feel like we’re standing at a border with one foot in the world of public diplomats—who rarely consider arts and culture truly relevant to their work—and the other in the land of arts practitioners and managers, who care deeply about civic engagement but don’t often have a firm grasp on how their work figures into efforts to improve international relations. But the two professions share some fundamental concerns.
American Voices was selected by the U.S. Center for Citizen Diplomacy as a “Top Ten Best Practices Organization.” AV Founder and Executive Director John Ferguson recently answered my questions regarding the nonprofit’s arts-based cultural diplomacy work abroad.
Just a quick note: musician Clay Ross shared a great video with me from his trip to London in October, so I thought I’d pass it along. Posted by US Embassy London, it shows him playing African-American music to a group of rapt schoolchildren in celebration of the UK’s Black History Month. Photo/Chico Farias