When was the last time someone told you they really liked your work? What about the last time someone told someone else they really liked your work – are you able to think of that? And… What about the last time you told someone that you really liked someone else’s work – do you know when that was?
We like to think that our creative communities – of whichever ones we become a part – are diverse; and that these celebrate and encourage this diversity… But, if they are, and they do, then shouldn’t this encompass diversity in all its forms? We don’t just mean, for example, diversity of gender identity, nationality and race, but also diversity of idea and emotion, of creative process and creative practice.
To us, a creative community means a naturally diverse group of inter-, multi- and transdisciplinary practitioners, participating actively in collaboration and co-operation for mutual benefit, prioritising the exchange of advice, knowledge and support over competition, influence and status. This type of community-based and driven thinking and doing has brought us this far, to a point where the creative industries contribute significantly to cultural, societal and political development – not to mention local and national economies – so why does it feel as if we’re gently moving away from this?