Philadelphia

Creative Exchange Call for Toolkits!

As the national program of Springboard for the Arts, Creative Exchange hosts free, practical toolkits created by artists and arts organizations along with our editorial work sharing the stories and...


One year of women, talking to each other, about something other than a man

January 20, 2018 marked the first full year of Donald Trump in the White House, and what a year it has been for women. An ideological sea change, led by women, has manifested in countless ways...


5 Questions with Creative Exchange: What we have learned from our artists

Since August 2016, Creative Exchange has been asking each of our Artists With Impact a series of five questions, which appear at the end of every profile. We did this to create a thread of continuity...


Citizen artist: Eric Liu on artists’ role in civic life

Artists embody what it means to be a citizen, says Eric Liu. But the co-founder and CEO of Citizen University is quick to explain that “citizenship” doesn’t refer to a person’s documentation...


Poet Ursula Rucker uses rage to find humanity

On April 21, 2016, the world collectively mourned in purple as we learned of the death of one of pop music’s most enigmatic icons, Prince Rogers Nelson. Philadelphia poet Ursula Rucker was among...


Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher dreams while walking on the ground

Philadelphia might best be known as the City of Brotherly Love, but it could also be called the City of Poets for its dedication to supporting and promoting the literary form. With a citywide Poet...


Lisa Jo Epstein encourages just acts through Just Act, using applied theatre in community development

Philadelphia-based theatre director, educator, and community artist Lisa Jo Epstein has spent 27 years working in the realm of applied theatre. She calls her latest project, Just Act – which...


Mural Arts' Porch Light Toolkit

Mural Arts in Philadelphia believes that hands-on art-making provides a strong pathway for individual and community healing. Their Porch Light program, a joint collaboration with the City of...


Making political art great again: t. Rutt takes the T.RUMP bus on the road

In the more light-hearted corners of the Internet, it has been jokingly suggested that Donald Trump’s entire bizarre presidential campaign has really just been an elaborate piece of performance...


Michael O'Bryan

Michael O'Bryan helps people to find sanctuary in art

Sanctuary is a place of refuge or safety. In urban neighborhoods all throughout America, sanctuary is a luxury almost beyond attainment. But Michael O’Bryan is working to bring that sense of...


2 Years of Creative Exchange!

It’s hard to believe, but Creative Exchange just turned 2! The platform was launched in March of 2014 in response to the question, “How do we support a movement around the power of local art and...


Colette Fu

Colette Fu makes pop-up photo books that examine the self through photos of others

Colette Fu was a pretty typical teenager growing up in New Jersey: insecure about her looks and her identity, as so many teenagers are, Fu would peroxide her hair to alter her appearance. She was...


Alex Gilliam

Alex Gilliam is Building Heroes

Public Workshop started in Philadelphia in 2009, but is really an outgrowth of the work Alex Gilliam has been doing teaching design and architecture over the past 17 years. With Public Workshop and...


Adrienne Mackey

Swim Pony uses science-minded experimentation in artistic exploration

It might seem that science and the arts are at odds with each other – “left brain” vs. “right brain” thinking, facts and stats vs. thoughts and feelings, lab...


Jen Cole

Sharing, Building, Leading

What does the passion for local art look like on a national scale? What if the sharing economy valued sharing?          What can we do to connect people to resources that support their...


Co-op organizers and participants (from left) Karon Smith, Courtney Bowles, Faith Barton, Keenan Jones, and Mark Strandquist

People's Paper Co-op rewrites the narratives of those with criminal records through papermaking

This is the third in a series of artist profiles featuring the work of artists around social justice, policing, and activism. Click on the links to read previous stories on...


Lindsay Tucker So

Write Your Block relates poetry and place in Philadelphia

Philadelphia has a rich heritage of poetry reflected in a diversity of poets and a vibrant poetry culture that includes respected institutions like the Kelly Writers House at the University of...


Creative Interventions Tour, Detroit

Hunter Franks: Reflections on the 2014 Creative Interventions Tour

“My parents said if you have a boy he will wrestle; that is what he will do,” Lisa remarked, referring to her son Martaz. I had just met Martaz and Lisa a week before, as they participated in my...


Rocio Cabello and Renny Molenaar

iMPeRFeCT Gallery celebrates artists with commitment and the collision of high and low art

The concept of “perfection” in the art world is almost impossible to attain, yet that doesn’t stop artists from trying or critics from criticizing. It was the rejection of this...


Gayle Isa

Asian Arts Initiative shepherds community engagement and integration in Philly's Chinatown North

Gayle Isa started working at the Painted Bride Art Center in Philadelphia in 1993. This was in the aftermath of the infamous Rodney King verdict and the riots in Los Angeles that followed. Racial...


Laura Zabel

Welcome to Creative Exchange (again)

“I believe in the magic of storytelling, not only for teller but also the listener,” says agrarian artist Nikiko Masumoto, who lives and works in California’s Central Valley....


Andrew Simonet

Artists U teaches artists how to make a life

The hardest thing about making a life as an artist is actually making a life as an artist. That’s where Artists U comes in. Andrew Simonet is a choreographer and a writer who directed the...


Sara Ansell

The Porch Light Program takes the transformative power of art to the streets

The Porch Light Program is a program of the City of Philadelphia’s Mural Arts, a citywide transformative arts project that has been ongoing for 30 years. Porch Light takes the idea of the...


Cindy Stockton Moore

Grizzly Grizzly is an artist collective focused on citywide collaboration

When it comes to identifying which arts organization is behind what art project in the city of Philadelphia, attributions can get a little tricky. While artists today are generally known to proffer a...


Nichole Canuso

All the world's a stage: Nichole Canuso Dance Company creates "experiential" dance performances

You are one of six people in a room inside the Power Plant Productions basement, where a labyrinthine art installation has been constructed. You are each given a set of headphones to wear, and then...