The Artist-Run Centres and Collectives Conference/Conférence des collectifs et des centres d’artistes autogérés (ARCA), is proud to launch “Digital Literacy in Six Micro-Bites,” its latest publication for workers in artist-run centres and other small arts organizations. This initiative stems from the partnership “For a concerted approach to professional development adapted to the Canadian Francophonie” concluded in 2017 between ARCA, the Association des groupes en arts visuels francophones (AGAVF) and the Regroupement des centres d’artistes autogérés (RCAAQ). To this end, the services of Isabelle L’Heureux, digital culture advisor working for the RCAAQ, were retained to adapt to the Canadian context, a series of articles on digital culture created for members of artist-run centers in Quebec. The six-essay series first ran from December 2019 through May 2020 in L’arca in the loop, ARCA’s monthly newsletter.
The publication’s objective is to demystify digital culture. Each of the six essays focuses on a key concept such as discoverability, linked and open data, cloud computing, online dissemination, and even offers some insights on reconfiguring programming on line due to COVID-19 physical distancing measures! Produced in an easy-to-navigate PDF format, with detailed bookmarks, each concept is defined in simple terms, and illustrated through concrete examples useful for everyday operations in organizations. As a whole, the publication highlights the potential of digital technologies in the reach of artists, their works and their organizations.
Already in February 2017, at their forum on dissemination held in Quebec, AGAVF had invited Mériol Lehmann, former director of Avatar, an artist-run centre in Quebec, to present a conference on the impact the digital shift for the members of visual and media arts organizations in Francophone and Acadian communities. Added to the publication to provide greater context, the summary of his presentation, besides the essays, reminds us how much the principles of digital thinking have long been part of the practice of artists.
The publication will be posted on the partners’ websites and will also be deposited in the e-artexte database, a Web-based search-optimized digital repository, where most people begin their search for information.
Publication of “Digital Literacy in Six Micro-Bites” concludes ARCA’s professional development pilot project, which began in 2018 with funding from the Digital Strategy Fund (DSF) of the Canada Council for the Arts, which also supported several group training workshops and individual coaching opportunities on these topics.