South African artists have declared that their future is aligned with struggles for equality, transformation and social justice, and called for improved cooperation with 'broader civil society' heralding 'the transformative impact of the arts on society and nation-building'.
The first national #StandTogether Arts summit hosted by the Sustaining Theatre and Dance (STAND) Foundation ended last week with a series of resolutions that aim to strengthen the voice of artists and raise the visibility of arts in education and civil society advocacy.
After three days of discussion and introspection, resolutions were adopted by delegates from 33 organisations, across disciplines and genres, at the summit in Stellenbosch. They included the Visual Arts Network of SA, National Writers Association of SA, the SA United Cultural and Creative Industries Federation, Im4theArts and the Theatre and Dance Alliance.
The summit found common purpose on the need to build diverse, representative, democratic and united voices through better coordination and collaboration.
In their words, "a seed has been planted for broader sectoral cooperation".
According to Yvette Hardie, honorary president of International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People and deputy chairperson of STAND, the summit created space for "engagement and discovery"; it exuded a sense of...