10 Minute talks


Chloe Bessen, Noyes Art Designs

#NeverAgain: The Conversation Continued

We would like to host a follow up talk to the recent exhibition that we curated titled #NeverAgain: The Conversation Continued, a student art show that provided a platform for high school students in the Boulder/Denver area to express themselves through art and community on the topic of school shootings. http://www.chloebesson.com/


Tanya Blacklight and Christine Palafox, ElseWhere Studio

Per(fume) of Prayer:  Reclaiming Shock and Sorrow

An artistic, communal eco-dance ritual project co-directed by Christine Palafox and Tanya Blacklight, in collaboration with and funded by the Elsewhere Inspired Art-at-Work-Project, generating awareness and response to the environmental and public health concerns posed by the approval of 146 fracking wells upstream from the Paonia reservoir.  This project will result in a montage of multimedia, filmed, live, prayer~formance and community dance rituals performed on site in nature, particularly in and on bodies of water, forest, farms, orchards, wineries and beautiful areas that sustain us and that we hold dear and precious. We will be using both ancient and modern contemporary movements with ethnic influences such as Butoh, Bellydance, Folkdance, Martial Arts and Sacred Geometric Movement, along with ritual costuming, hand built props, and current modern technologies such as film and media, to convey the effects of the commercial oil and gas industries on our environment, the ecosystems, the health of our communities and well being.


Gregg Deal


"Suspicious" is about the way brown people occupy spaces and are seen as a threat. http://greggdeal.com


Alison Fast, Blue Magnolia Films

Blue Magnolia Films: Crafting Community Stories

Blue Magnolia Films will share examples of how to promote community storytelling using iphones and new technology through short format videos and interactive public arts installations. http://bluemagnoliafilms.squarespace.com/


Misha Fraser, The Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls, and Toys

Small Statements: when the cute gets political

The Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys is moving out of the neighborhood it's been in for over 30 years. The staff wanted to know how their neighbors were feeling about the changes Denver was going through, so they asked them to think small -- and make dioramas. https://www.dmmdt.org/


Megan Gafford, RedLine Resident Artist

Science Moves Us Forward

During last year’s summit I described how science inspires my artwork, asserting that I would not choose to live in ignorance of the laws of physics to be safer from nuclear war.  This year, I will elaborate on why scientific progress moves us forward in a precious and profound way. http://megangafford.com/


Amy Jones, University of Colorado Hospital

Beyond Words: Creative Arts Therapies and Palliative Care

Learn how the Creative Arts Therapy Program at University of Colorado Hospital promotes creative expression to help patients and caregivers process the experience of serious illness. Through dedicated time at the bedside, the music and art therapists support creative engagement to enhance a sense of control and hone coping skills.


Marda Kirn, EcoArts, AIS Grantee

Think Like an Eco-System

Why is it that so many people know we’re facing multiple sustainability crises, but so few people are actually doing anything about them? Studies show that effective action requires a combination of cognition and affect (or intellect and emotions, facts and feelings) working together rather than separately or alone. In their affective roles as agents of personal and social change, the arts, informed by science and other fields, can introduce issues in new ways and move people—emotionally and physically—to act. This presentation offers a blitz tour of images, examples, ideas, and results demonstrating how the arts are essential collaborators in making climate change and sustainability personal, visceral, and actionable.



Jill Locantore, WalkDenver, AIS Grantee

Vision Zero Community Art Project

Vision Zero is an international movement focused on eliminating traffic fatalities and serious injuries. The Vision Zero Community Art Project brings together the community along Denver's Colfax corridor to highlight the human cost of unsafe streets, and demonstrate support for designing streets that are safe for everyone. http://www.walkdenver.org/


Damon McLeese, Access Gallery, AIS Grantee

Moving from Access to Inclusion

Nearly 20% of the population has a disability. We approach individuals with disabilities through a lens of program or physical access rather than a humanistic approach. Disability cuts through all economic, racial, age or political leanings. It is the only minority group that one can join at any time. https://accessgallery.org/


Edica Pacha

Orenda- Impact through Inspiration

“Orenda” [oh-ren-duh] is a concept from the Iroquois Indians that speaks to the place inside each person that wants to create positive impact in the world. This talk will investigate how large scale art has the power to impact change through creative practices and storytelling platforms. https://www.edicapacha.com/


Ella Maria Ray

Afrofuturism in Ancient Spaces and Contemporary Times

This presentation explores Afrofuturism as a continental and diasporic African approach to building advanced societies, as well as surviving beyond the maafa—the enslavement holocaust.  What happens if we come to see Afrofuturism as a movement that may very well empower the Black community and humanity?


Zahraa Saleh, AIS Grantee Participant

Picture Me Here



Cortney Stell, Black Cube

Unearthed: Desenterrado

Cortney Stell and Hannah James of Black Cube discuss "Unearthed: Desenterrado," an outdoor, site-specific counter-monument placed along the US/Mexico border by artist Adriana Corral. The installation features a solitary 60-foot flagpole hoisting a large-scale white, cotton flag, and speaks to the deeply rooted history between the United States and Mexico.




Catherine O’Neill Thorn, Art From Ashes, AIS Grantee

The Transformative Power of Metaphor

We are all born creative geniuses. In our creativity we each have the tools to transform our own struggles into successes. Catherine O'Neill Thorn is the founding director of Art from Ashes, Colorado's first youth arts agency to use a process of creative expression specifically designed to facilitate personal transformation. http://www.artfromashes.org/