Arts.Co.Lab is a BIPOC centered space where everyone is invited to participate.
It’s no secret that the arts and culture ecosystem in our communities, in the Mission District and across the San Francisco Bay area has been affected by years of gentrification and displacement. Based on information of the National Endowment for the Arts Call by the end of 2019, about 80% of the artist had experienced a form of displacement from their homes, workspaces, or performance places, a situation quickly aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic. According to a survey by Americans for the Arts, 95% of artists lost income during the covid crisis limiting their access to art supplies, physical space, and their social network. Of them, a staggering 80% of surveyed artists have no plan to get back on their feet.
2020 • • • Our First Year
In the wake of the health crisis of 2020, our agency started offering pro-bono professional coaching to artist to navigate that bureaucracy of accessing emergency funds from local, state, and national organizations, initially supporting 29 artists across the state of California, and Canada.
2022 • • • The Future
2022 is all about strengthening the Arts and Culture ecosystem in our communities; holding spaces to convene to create equity goals and policies, developing cultural strategies with promising impact; using engagement in arts and culture to dismantle narratives of oppression, poverty, and trauma; building relationships and advocating for government representatives to create funding for undeserved youth, specifically for cultural education, and mental health for artists; as well as partnering with arts and culture organizations to create culturally relevant means through technology to engage public input from underrepresented communities.
MEET THE FOUNDERS
Arturo Méndez is an arts producer working in areas of development/fundraising, communication, event production/curation, community organizing, and cultural diplomacy in the Mission District of San Francisco, and Puebla, Mexico for over 10 years.
He is the creator and current Executive Director of ‘La Diáspora Festival’ and a curator of the ‘Mission Arts and Performance Project’, formerly working at the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts. He has produced shows for Harvard and Cornell University, and the United Nations, as well as the Mexican Consulate in SF, and the Secretary of Culture of Puebla, Mexico.
In 2020, he participated in different Fellowships such as the Advocacy Leadership Institute by NALAC, Emergent Arts Professionals of SF and Seeding Reciprocity with the San Francisco Arts Commission.
His commitment to telling stories about immigrants and underrepresented groups is an endless source of inspiration in search for justice and dignity for all.
Therese Davis (M. Cheeskos)
Therese Davis (M. Cheeskos) is a Creative and Life Coach and has coached over 220 creatives, SF Bay Area Social Practice Artist, Administrator, Social Media, Event Planning and Marketing Specialist Contractor. Therese is an EAP Fellowship Alumni, lifelong activist and artist whose earliest memories involve advocating for voting equality and civil rights.
She is also a Leadership Development Coordinator focusing on personal and professional development for social and environmental impact with Holistic Underground. Her coaching practice supports change makers and artists.
She is a storyteller’s dream – Therese listens. An artist and change maker herself, she knows the journey inside and out. She is dedicated to helping artists and activists actualize their hopes, dreams, and purpose in physical reality. Therese generously shares her experience and insights as a lifelong performing artist with the great fortune to tour, act in film and video, and record. She specializes in working with non-binary and queer women, BIPOC folks, activists, emerging and established artists.
She has experience supporting over 10 years of experience in supporting artists to identify and pursue numerous fundraising streams from silent auctions to crowdfunding. She has supported artists and organizations in raising over $30,000.00 collectively.
She has been an artist project and performance manager, recorded on 7 cds, worked for 10 years as a hired sessions back-up vocalist, performed at small and massive venues as a percussionist and vocalist. In addition, she has over a decade of full production work experience.