CreArt (Free Arts Society) has been functioning for the past 11 years in Edmonton providing free arts and community base programs for people of all ages, backgrounds, and neighborhoods. Free Arts has been developing free Family Friendly Music Nights to showcase some of the talents in the community in a safe space where people can share with one another and build community connections. With 14 successful events in the past 4 years, CreArt means to continue to offer these services in the future.
Free Arts consists of a broader vision and has extended its outreach to include graffiti and mural art, creative
writing, spoken word, mass media development and theater. In November 2015, Free Arts developed the largest community outdoor art gallery in Alberta, with more 1900 square feet of art in the Kinnard Ravine area. This project consisted of contribution from Boyle Street Community Service, iHuman, Boyle Street Community League, Parkdale Cromdale Community League, Quarters Art, Bent Arrow, Nina Haggerty Center for the Arts, John Howard Society, Aerosol Academy, Heart of the City and local community artists. The plan is to extend the project to a 5 year scope, where the murals are changing every year, along with services to teach more about this art form.
In 2015, Free Arts developed a series of 8 theater workshops for homeless youth at Parkdale Cromdale Community League. The intention was to develop skills for a short film production with Boyle Street Community Service. The production City Embers will be released in the middle of 2016. Along with these accomplishments, CreArt initiated a number smaller projects which included creative writing and spoken word.
Free Arts is a growing non-profit with a strong community background story. We have become a non-profit organization with the goal of expanding our mission of using arts as a tool of social transformation for individuals and Edmonton communities.
We will consider 2024 a successful year if:
We have built the capacity to begin paying our artists for their contribution to the development of the artistic community in Edmonton;
We increase the number of CreArt Edmonton students per workshop. Our goal is to reach 120 unique students in 2024;
We successfully apply for grants and receive the support of funders and sponsors;
We grow our membership and community engagement;
We collaborate with local artists to develop new creative spaces where we can develop ongoing dialogues and create new projects for the future.
Free Arts goals, while navigating pandemic and economic challenges in 2024, are to be a creative outlet for our community, to reduce social-isolation through arts education and events, to deliver high-quality programming, to create financial opportunities for artists, and to maintain the artistic momentum of our students and instructors.
We also plan to develop evaluation tools and qualitative metrics to determine our organization’s success. Through community meetings, we will gather feedback from students and mentors to recalibrate our programming (if needed) and to ensure we meet our goals for fostering social connection, offering high-quality programming, and maintaining artists’ momentum.