Seminar/interactive learning session with Gordon Kerr –
teacher, writer, producer, publisher, arts administrator; Director of Dazzling Spark Arts Foundation (UK).
Gordon James Kerr teaches at the University of Macau, China where he specializes in Business Ethics, CSR and Communication. As Coordinator of Instruction at the Centre for Teaching and Learning Enhancement he brings a wealth of experience in administration, teaching and educational project management. His life long passion for the arts as a writer, actor, director and producer of theatre, music and film includes over 30 years experience as an editor, publisher and multi-media exhibition designer. A patron of the arts he is currently Founder/Director of the Dazzling Spark Arts Foundation (UK) which focuses on supporting grassroots arts initiatives with a social impact.
DSAF was recently established to promote excellence in the arts in service to humanity. Based in Scotland our approach of supporting grassroots initiatives, sponsorships and partnership programs, focuses on the social impact of the arts within the context of wider community development. Our experience suggests that this strategy offers access to wider networks of support than more traditional sources of patronage and arts funding. Our goal is to explore a range of different contexts where artists can demonstrate the important role they can play in the revisioning
and re-making of society. This is not to pursue some narrow political vision or reduce art to mere utilitarian values, but instead puts artists at the centre of community building through a process of dialogue, reflection and engagement thereby nurturing long-term sustainable relationships and unlocking creative potential.
The learning we would like to share focuses on the complex and iterative nature of building community support for arts based projects and the way in which untapped resources of goodwill and enthusiasm can be successfully leveraged to obtain grant aid and matching funds.
We have adopted three lenses Literary Arts, Visual Arts and Music & Performing Arts and our initial program includes support and assistantships for individual artists; retreats, consultancy and project development funds; and partnerships with cultural organisations, educational networks, faith communities and charities covering a wide range of issues such as mental health, homelessness and suicide prevention, substance abuse, racism and social exclusion.