How do the Arts advance change?

Posted on: 3rd May 2011

ICAN brings international practitioners to discuss the impact of socially engaged arts practice


A professor of social justice education has been confirmed as a key note speaker at the ICAN Spring Conference, Borders and Boundaries.

Building upon the success of the inaugural Playhouse International Culture Arts Network ICAN conference program 2010, EXCHANGE CONNECT, the two-day conference will examine the integration and ethics of socially engaged arts practice.

International consultant on the empowerment of women, Barbara J. Love will be one of several speakers at the international conference on Thursday May 19 and Friday May 20 at An Grianan Theatre and the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny, County Donegal.

Head of Playwriting at Brown University Erik Ehn, who captivated the audience at last year's EXCHANGE CONNECT conference, will return to chair the upcoming conference, and key note speakers include David Grant, Queens University Northern Ireland and renowned Professor and Director James Thompson.

James Thompson, director of In Place of War, a research based project exploring performance and theatre in war zones at University of Manchester, will present a unique lecture performance called ‘cutting and chopping.

Other speakers will include Utrecht University's Eugene van Erven, Director and Co-Founder of DAH Theatre Dijana Milošević, Art Role UK's Adalet Garmiany, Founder and Artistic Producer of the Judith Marcuse Projects in Canada Judith Marcuse, and Visual Artist and Lecturer at Goldsmiths University of London's John Johnston.

The Borders & Boundaries conference aims to bring artists, practitioners, community members, health workers and educationalists together to discuss the ethics of socially engaged arts practice.

"The conference will provide a space for a diverse group to share and discuss the trials and tribulations of arts practice in the community setting" ICAN co-ordinator Elaine Forde said.

"This forum will give an international and local perspective on the issues of delivering this type of work and will access the outcomes in search of best practice.

The conference is aimed at people interested in the power of the arts to advance conflict resolution and social change - community development workers, youth workers, arts practitioners, arts/cultural outreach workers, educationalists and policy-makers. The conferences will draw together a group of community development organisations with particular experience and commitment in this area of work."

To attend the conference or for more information contact Elaine Forde ICAN co-ordinator, on 0044 (0)28 71268 027 or email


Fire Dresses  DAH THEATRE


ICAN  eu

International Culture Arts Network (ICAN)is a three year project which has been part-financed by the European Union's Regional Development fund through EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation (Peace III) managed through Special EU Programmes Body.

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