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2018 Urban Bush Women

Summer Leadership Institute


You, Me, We –

Understanding Internalized Racial Oppression and How it Manifests in Our Artistic Community

July 20 - 29, 2018  |  Phoenix, AZ




Urban Bush Women is engaging in a dynamic and groundbreaking partnership with Projecting All Voices, an initiative launched by ASU’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts and supported by ASU Gammage. Both UBW and Projecting All Voices are interested in discovering ways in which institutions can move beyond diversity initiatives and become organizations that lead in examining structural racism and its impact on our curriculums, programing, organizing and art-making practices. This July, UBW will bring our Summer Leadership Institute themed “You, Me, We: Understanding Internalized Racial Oppression and How it Manifests in Our Artistic Community” to Arizona State University, giving UBW the opportunity to strengthen our core values out west and allowing Projecting All Voices to contribute to the changing landscape of Arizona.

UBW often uses the movement metaphor of Core & Distal to talk about our dance and community engagement practice. We engage our core—our own bodies, identities and communities—as essential for maintaining clarity and stability through UBW’s “Entering, Building and Exiting Community” (EBX) workshop. We engage the distal—other bodies, identities and communities so that we do not become insular and secluded.

Through work with the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB) “Understanding and Undoing Racism” workshop, the summer program will illuminate how we are disempowered by internalized racial oppression as it manifests both for people of color and white people. We will examine how these manifestations show up in our organizing, creations and collaborations.  We will metaphorically explore the beauty of the desert to begin a process of stripping away the impact of racism. We will focus on how we bring transformation and healing to ourselves, our communities and our institutions / organizations. Does our work challenge or recreate dominant frameworks and systems of policing that ignore history, culture, power and lineage? How can we explode predetermined expectations, restore our full humanity and activate our true strength? Through “You, Me, We,” we will find our individual and collective power together!

JOIN us in learning how to employ a structural analysis of racism and disrupt its ability to remain embedded yet unexamined in our work, workplaces, institutions and art-making—even when we have good intentions.  In partnership with People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond, classes will be taught by UBW’s BOLD (Builders, Organizers & Leaders through Dance) facilitators.

At this 10-day institute we will deepen our understanding of UBW’s “BOLD" approach to art-making, community organizing and social change by focusing on:

BOLD Leadership

Cultivating ourselves as art-centered leaders capable of galvanizing and facilitating change with values that reflect the philosophy and methodology of UBW and our partner organization, People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond.

Developing a clear analysis of racism and strategic action plans to move forward in our creative work and organizing.

BOLD Collaboration & Art-Making

Holding the values that help us work together effectively, while acknowledging our assets and creating together.

Creating art based on collective learning & research, and engaging in public dialogues.

Using UBW’s choreographic and creative processes as the bedrock for creating, learning, building, and finding power together while examining our assumptions about our work and organizing.

Creating multi-genre performances that are intentionally complex and rich with our power.

Our core workshops will be:

Dance For Every Body; Entering, Building and Exiting Community; Understanding and Undoing Racism® Community Organizing Workshop (by the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond - PISAB); Asset Mapping; and Using Research to Create Performance.  Click HERE for more information about these workshops.

The Summer Leadership Institute is the ideal place to turn challenges into opportunities for finding your/our power – artistically, individually and collectively. Study with Urban Bush Women and our powerful partner, The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond, in addition to dozens of experienced artists and organizers from around the country who make up the SLI faculty!

You, Me We – Join the Movement!

Application opens January 16th.

For more information email sli@urbanbushwomen.org or join our mailing list using the "Join Us" link at the top of the UBW website.

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