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Artist/Admin: Collaboration

  • CUE Art Foundation 137 West 25th Street New York, NY, 10001 United States (map)

Artist/Admin: Collaboration

Tuesday, June 27.  6:30 - 8:30PM

This group discussion about collaboration will address how art and cultural institutions can mediate the perception of competition and work together towards a more equitable distribution of resources. Join us to share food and best practices for building collaborative networks, pooling resources, and supporting others in their creative work; we aim to walk away enlightened, invigorated, and in continuing conversation about reducing bureaucratic inefficiencies and relieving false competition by working together.

This seventh session of Artist/Admin is co-facilitated by Lisa Hoffman, Katherine Tom, and Kira Simon-Kennedy. Our three facilitators each come with their own extensive knowledge of building collaborative networks and working to support others in their creative work. Lisa helms the Alliance of Artist Communities, a massive network of artist residencies that organizes national conferences, and recently led her predominantly white board through anti-oppression training for the first time. Katherine is a core member of BUFU, who are currently building relationships across different collectives in NYC to learn to self-generate resources, support one another and help each other thrive in the work. And Kira orchestrates chain reactions of institutional resource and knowledge transfers through her nonprofit China Residencies, as well as online and offline collectives, collaborative websites, documentaries and zines.

After brief hellos and introductions, facilitators will lead breakout sessions around these three questions:

  • How can we mediate narratives of scarcity and competition?
  • How could we work towards more equitable distributions of labor, resources and attention?
  • How many layers of meta-collaboration (networks of networks, for example) are sustainable?

RSVP if you can make it, and if you can’t, don’t worry. We’ll be sharing notes and takeaways from this session to circulate far and wide.

The gallery is ADA accessible with direct street level access and wheelchair accessible restroom.

Artist/Admin is a monthly meeting of creative people, administrators, and cultural workers to talk about and create new forms of cultural institutions. Learn more at

Katherine Tom is a core member of BUFU, a collaborative living archive centered around (pan)Black and (pan)Asian cultural and political relationships. The founders of this project are a collective of queer, femme and non-binary, Black and East-Asian artists and organizers. Through collaborative programming, visual archives, and building long-term partnerships with collectives, organizations, and individuals, BUFU aims to facilitate a global conversation on the relationship between Black & Asian diasporas, with an emphasis on building solidarity, de-centering whiteness, and resurfacing our deeply interconnected and complicated histories.

Lisa Hoffman is the Executive director at the Alliance of Artists Communities, an international association of artist residency programs. She is the former Associate Director of the McColl Center of Art + Innovation, where she oversaw programs and strategic initiatives, community engagement, and the flagship Environmental Program at McColl Center.

Prior to McColl Center, she served as Director of Charlotte Nature Museum, and held positions as a science educator and mentor with the District of Columbia and Prince George's County Maryland Public Schools. Honored for her dedication in connecting children and families to the natural world, she is also committed to place-based education, the improvement of schools in marginalized communities and research in creative placemaking.

The recipient of Charlotte Business Journal's 40 Under 40 Award, Lisa has served on the board of North Carolina Association of Environmental Education Centers, North Carolina Play Alliance, and regularly participates as a speaker at various community and national events including National Innovation Summit for Arts and Culture. Currently she serves on boards for the Jazz Arts Initiative and Lakewood Trolley, and is a former board member of the Alliance of Artists Communities. Most recently she was appointed by President Obama to be a Member of the National Museum and Library Services Board. Holding an MS degree in Biology and a BS degree in Botany from Howard University in Washington, DC, Lisa is dedicated to social practice and the convergence of art and science as a vehicle to improve lives and effect systemic change.

Kira Simon-Kennedy is the co-founder and director of China Residencies, a nonprofit supporting creative exchange in within China and the diaspora by sharing resources and creating a network of over 30 different residencies in mainland China and Hong Kong. Through the nonprofit's year-old fiscal sponsorship program, China Residencies supports creative collectives and community organizations like BUFUYellow Jackets, a queer/intersectional Yellow American collective collaborating towards radical futures that centralize marginalized bodies; and The W.O.W Project, a community space and artist residency shaping the future of New York's Chinatown. 

Kira is also a board member of Res Artis, the worldwide network of artist residencies, and one of the people in the NYC- and web-based collective Public Science, where she coordinates residencies for projects like White Fragility. Since 2016, Kira has been member of NEW INC, the New Museum's incubator for art, technology and design, where she is working on res, a search tool for creative opportunities, in collaboration with Rate My Artist Residency and Residency Unlimited. 

Additionally, she produces independent documentary films like Jessica Kingdon's Commodity City, about daily lives of vendors who work in the largest wholesale consumer market in the world in Yiwu, China.