Art Anchour | Health Beacon
ArtHouse is an aspirational model of city sanctioned, accessible and appropriate spaces in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) dedicated to creative convergence for community health. ArtHouse exemplifies the interdependence of health, well-being and the arts while legitimizing artists and their requirements by providing live work studio apartments mixed with affordable housing, community health orgs, community garden & community kitchen, multi-media arts production & programming space under one roof.
We imagine an ideal with accessible opportunities for marginalized, emerging and established Creative Agents as well people in need of affordable housing to live and work in a mixed-use housing environment conducive to creative convergence with an emphasis on community health and wellbeing.
With municipal and provincial funding, partnerships with indigenous, black, racialized, LGBTQ+, and creative communities, healthcare professionals, local organizations focused on social equity, poverty, accessibility, urban growing initiatives, renewable & sustainable energy & technologies, from inception through to fruition and operations, will be instrumental in the authentic realization and ultimate success of this project. Together with strategic partnerships, we imagine an emergent model, following the guidelines of universal design, for new builds in the GTA. We envision each hub tailored to and led by the communities they are in, each with an emphasis on affordable housing, healthcare, arts & culture and sustainable food production and distribution.
We understand that given the current health and economic crisis, energies, dollars and resources will need to be invested accordingly to address COVID 19 for some time to come. And in this pause afforded to many, but not all - because this is definitely not a pause for many people who continue to put their lives at risk on the front lines in order to provide essential services - we can also imagine, conceptualize, illustrate and articulate ideas for a world that is better suited to cultivating a just, equitable, healthy world for all living beings to thrive towards their optimal potential.
Community /Pollinator Garden informed and led by local Indigenous Communities
Why Is It Important To Support Artists?
Artists help us to visualize possible worlds
Artists are able to make new connections, discover new relationships and articulate news ideas in ways that are infinitely engaging.
Artists take many seemingly divergent and disparate ideas, distill and present them in ever evolving new ways that people can engage with.
Artists will take their insides out and show you all of the beauty and the guts just so you can look inwards at yourself and realize all of the similarities, and the differences.
Artists pursue precarious, uncertain paths contrary to a capitalist mindset, against the “better judgement” of well meaning advisors because artists know that they need the process of art making for the sake of their own well being, let alone they have something worth expressing.
Artists and the works artists produce afford other humans an opportunity to step back, reflect on one's own life situation, and potentially recalibrate one's finite energy to being more compassionate, more patient, more self aware and pursue more meaningful and purposeful endeavours.
Artists create communities. Artists bring communities together. Artists give communities a voice
Artists provide for us means of escape, means for understanding, means for processing, means for healing, means for integrating, means for transforming and evolving.
This is a time where people are particularly receptive to understanding the real value of healthcare, the real value of the arts, and the interdependence and intersections therein regarding healing, recovery, processing and fostering a better world for all. A Creative Convergence Centre For Community Arts & Health is the perfect place to cultivate that world.
To inform the model, we first need to identify the specific needs of Toronto's Creative Community in order to address them authentically. We will be gathering data throughout this project with the help of your participation! Yes we need YOU to help us. Follow us on Instagram and stay tuned on how you can get involved!
Are there models out there already? Absolutely! And here we will explore who is doing what in Toronto to address the needs of creative professionals. No need to reinvent the wheel! We can learn a lot from places like Akin Collective and Artscape. They provide invaluable services and programming for artists.
However, with so many live/work spaces in the city vanishing due to unchecked reno-victions and condo developments that don't accommodate artists, we need to invest in more proactive measures to address what is becoming a cultural crisis in Toronto with so many creative people being displaced with few accessible alternatives.
Contact us if you are interested in joining us on this project!
Follow @arthouseto on Instagram and join the conversation !