WMA recently concluded House Party for Art, its first virtual festival during August 13-15th, which included artist hangouts, spoken word, and music performances from artists and musicians across the Southeast. In a time of extended physical distancing and preventative health measures to protect our Wiregrass community, WMA created the virtual festival as an alternative to its annual Yard Party for Art, adapting its traditional in-person event to meet the needs of artists and audiences alike.
At WMA, we’re committed to providing a platform for artists to experiment and exhibit their work because art experiences inspire, energize, and build creativity in our community. Arts participation brings people together and reduces social isolation, and in recent research, 9 out of 10 say that arts participation increases connection to community.¹ House Party for Art is one example of the many ways that WMA has adapted its programs in 2020 to provide innovative and fun channels for emerging and established artists and musicians to share art and bring people together through virtual and safe in-person experiences.
House Party for Art was free for all viewers, and because the festival was entirely digital, all performances and talks were archived at housepartyforart.com, where they can be enjoyed again at the convenience of the viewer.
2,751 views | 13 performances | 16 artists supported
For artists and musicians, House Party for Art was an opportunity to continue to practice and share their art forms, something especially important during a time of limited employment, exhibition, and concert opportunities. By introducing videos in a live format, performances created engaging, interactive conversations between viewers and artists. Live chat formats allowed viewers to ask questions, comment and exchange ideas, and provide encouragement to artists, who responded with extra context for their work through live answers.
Viewers tuned in from Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, District of Columbia, and North Carolina.
For the viewing audience, House Party for Art was a place for cultural sharing through diverse genres of music and art — from oil painting to electronica sound design, to spoken word poetry and indie pop — and the events connected them directly to artists and musicians. Viewers wrote in during performances and responded to WMA to communicate how they were inspired and felt a sense of connection within the performances and live interactions, even through screens.
To enjoy House Party for Art for the first time or to experience it again, visit housepartyforart.com. Subscribe to the #wmaINSPIRED blog or follow WMA on social media to keep up with the latest news about future programs and events that connect the public with artists.
¹“Arts + Community Cohesion.” https://www.americansforthearts.org/socialimpact
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