Animating Democracy director leads forum on arts, sustainability and civic issues

Ore. -- (April 17, 2009) - For centuries, the arts have been used as an outlet,
to make a statement, or to reflect current events. Communities, schools and
cultural organizations are using the arts to create dialogue to address social
and civic issues.

ideas of arts-based civic engagement will be explored April 29-30 at the
University of Oregon. Barbara Schaffer Bacon, co-director of Animating
Democracy, will facilitate arts leaders, community members and UO faculty and students
in discussions about using the arts to address pressing social, environmental
and civic issues.

will lead "Civic Engagement Roundtable" from 12:30 to 2 p.m.
April 29 at Portland Center Stage, 128 NW 11th Ave. Portland; and
"Community & Campus Forum" 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. April 30 at the Baker
Downtown Center, 975 High St., Eugene. The events are free and open to the

and cultural organizations are being called on to encourage and facilitate
greater civic participation. We can use the arts as a safe and receptive space
to give those who are often silenced or left out of the public discussion the
chance to participate and express alternative views," said Lori Hager,
professor in the UO Arts and Administration Program and associate director for
the Community Arts and Cultural Policy.

Democracy is a program of Americans for the Arts, a nonprofit organization for
advancing the arts in America. The organization is based on the premise that
democracy is animated when an informed public is engaged in the issues
affecting people's daily lives. The primary goal of the organization is to
build knowledge and practical skills in planning, implementing and evaluating
artistic programs that have goals for civic and social impact.

UO's Center for Community Arts, UO Arts and Administration Program sponsors the
Visiting Scholar Series. The roundtable in Portland is co-hosted by Portland
Center Stage. The "Community and Campus Forum" in Eugene is
co-sponsored by the UO Cultural Forum.

About the Center for Community
Arts and Cultural Policy
University of Oregon Center for Community Arts and Cultural Policy (CCACP)
sustains and strengthens arts, culture and heritage in the American West
through research, policy, education, and community engagement. Institute
faculty, students and affiliate members conduct and disseminate policy-relevant
research, and create and provide professional development opportunities to
address the needs of current and future leaders in a broadly defined cultural