On April 11, 2006, I attended an Arts and Culture Summit held at the Wosk Centre for Dialogue in Vancouver. Arts and Culture: Building B.C.’s Creative Agenda, was hosted by Olga Ilich, the Minister of Tourism, Sport and the Arts and moderated by Max Wyman.
I recorded the conversation and on April 12, 2006, I purchased the artsbc.com domain name to give everyone in the arts community access to the observations and ideas contributed by the participants at the summit and to give community leaders and contributors everywhere the opportunity and ability to connect with one another and contribute to the conversation about creating a future for the arts in British Columbia.
In September 2007, I was asked to edit a presentation of recommendations from ArtsFutureBC to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services for the Province of British Columbia which I was subsequently asked to present. In September 2008 I was asked to prepare and present recommendations to the Standing Committee for the 2009 budget year on behalf of ArtsFutureBC. I used this presentation as an opportunity to introduce the idea and possibility of British Columbia becoming known as Creative British Columbia.
These reports created and still create an opportunity for community leaders to engage in conversation about the future of the arts in British Columbia and the importance of our creative resources and our creative economy to the future of our province.
In 2009, I was invited to join the BC Culture Days Steering Committee. I could see the Culture Days initiative as an opportunity to give every community in British Columbia create a communication centre to showcase the arts and culture of their community to communicate and create connections with and for the arts with opportunities to explore the arts and the arts experience throughout the year. I began to tell the story about the opportunities I saw for the arts communities in British Columbia to build on and leverage the Culture Days event.
On March 17, 2011, the Assembly of BC Arts Councils changed their name to ArtsBC.
Arts and Culture Summit
This was my contribution to the conversation to the Arts and Culture Summit and how we can create a future for the arts in British Columbia. This is what I said:
My name is Roger Chilton and I come from the world of communications, and like David Baxter and Andrew I have trouble with the word values because it is a question of whose values, so I rather like the idea of replacing that word with ideas, which come from our cultural diversity.
But the thing that I feel that leads all of these strategic ideas and the creative challenge that we have is to create and better serve the audience for ideas, the arts, and our cultural product.
And that is an audience that has an appreciation and an understanding of the value and contribution of the arts, not intellectually but viscerally.
And the way we do this is through communications and in particular media. And in today’s world, media is content and connections, and it is using content to create connections with the interests of our audience, and using content to create interests in our audience.
Somebody mentioned a little earlier that now we can send an idea around the world in a few seconds. It is interesting to think about the artist and the artist who is recognized most is the artist that can send an idea to audiences very well so that it connects with the audience and they get it
We have the content that can create connections. Our artists and our arts community has that content. And I think we can use that content to create the media, and then use the media to create the audiences
And I think that is how we create a rich arts community and the kind of creative life that I think we can all enjoy.
This is what I was trying to say:
We have the media for increasing our understanding and appreciation of the contribution of the arts. We have the media for encouraging, supporting, and appreciating our artists and our creative community. We have the media for exciting investment in increasing the size and contribution of our creative community.
We have the media for increasing our understanding and appreciation for the contribution of the arts to our experience of life, to our imagination of our creative possibilities, to our understanding of the creative experience, to our ability to create with our experience and to our experience of appreciation and caring. Our media is our creative expression, our arts, the creative contributions of our artists and the connections, relationships, and appreciation our artists contribute to creating.
We have the opportunity to increase our knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of the arts and to increase the size and contribution of our arts community to creating connections, community, and appreciation for our experience of life and to creating an environment of appreciation and caring for our community, our world, and our future
Why the Arts
What we could do