The Alternate ROOTS/Community Built Association Connection


Jeff Mather (Atlanta, GA) | January 9, 2018

This year’s Community Built Association Conference will be held in Charleston, SC on March 22-25, 2018, with a Community Built Boot Camp from March 17-22.

Since 2004 Alternate ROOTS member artists have been mixing it up with members of the Community Built Association at their biannual conferences. The Community Built Association,  is made up mostly of public space “makers” who work in collaboration with communities on murals, mosaics, playgrounds, and public art and gathering places. This March the CBA is convening it’s 2018 conference in Charleston, SC and the organizers are seeking increased involvement from Alternate ROOTS members. You can register here for the conference here:

The last two CBA conferences have been preceded by a Community Built arts ‘Boot Camp’ and there will be another Boot Camp group forming in Charleston. This experience could be ideal for ROOTS artists interested in being public artists. Read the description here: Apply soon to secure a slot.

Why is there a desire to strengthen the relationship between ROOTS & CBA? CBA artists have been increasingly dealing with the impact of their community enhancement art projects on the process of gentrification. The mission of Alternate ROOTS and the depth of experience with the complexities of artistic community engagement that ROOTers possess, are what have CBA member artists wanting to get together with Alternate ROOTS artists this March in Charleston. Ideally we’ll get a cohort of CBA members to attend ROOTS Week 2018 to keep the exchange going and growing.

Alternate ROOTS members who have been part of the many exchanges over the last 14 years with the CBA include: Kathie deNobriga, Elise Witt, Jeff Mather, Mat Schwarzman, John O’Neal, Nick Slie, Art Spot, and Bond & Meg Anderson. It was Bond and Meg who initially forged the connection between ROOTS and CBA. Kathie and Jeff co-facilitated an RSC (Resources for Social Change) Learning Exchange for the CBA in New Orleans in 2010. It is my hope that the connection between these two organizations continues to deepen.

Alternate ROOTS supports the creation and presentation of original art that is rooted in communities of place, tradition or spirit. We are a group of artists and cultural organizers based in the South creating a better world together. As Alternate ROOTS, we call for social and economic justice and are working to dismantle all forms of oppression—everywhere.