Unfettering Artists' Productivity and Impact

CCI - In-Common: To Exchange, To Survive, and To Sustain

September 26, 2020, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Topic: Networking/Field Learning

Provider/Presenting Organization: Center for Cultural Innovation

Location: Online Classes/Webinars


In-Common: To Exchange, To Survive, and To Sustain

An Online Convening With Plenary Conversations, Break Out Discussions, and Virtual Networking

Saturday, September 26, 2020
10:00 am - 4:00 pm PDT


Did you miss In-Common: To Exchange, To Survive, and To Sustain?

If you missed the convening, or if you would like to access recorded content, please send a request to commons@cciarts.org

The current economic system has not supported the exchange of resources. Instead, our economy advocates for the exploitation of an ill-informed public, bestows accolades for personal risk/gain, and encourages unsustainable market behavior that leads to accumulating and hoarding of wealth. This has resulted in a vulnerable workforce and the rise of independent gig workers, and directly shapes the nature of our entrepreneurial culture. As a part of rethinking capitalist culture, and because systems change cannot happen overnight, it's time to advocate for a "redistribution" of access to knowledge and skills. 

CCI's In-Common: To Exchange, To Survive, and To Sustain convening will shine a spotlight on important efforts and projects that are exciting, promising alternatives to conventional systems and institutions that have done more to divide than unify people in the arts. We will center real solutions for building ownership, strengthening local economies, reducing debt, and advocating for better systems that work for all. 

Special Note: Given the financial hardship so many are facing as a result of COVID-19, and in the spirit of sharing resources, we are offering $75 stipends to registered attendees who are California residents with a financial need. In order to be eligible for a stipend, you must attend the convening and complete a brief survey about your convening experience. We anticipate that there will be more registered attendees than stipends available. For this reason, we will use a lottery to select stipend recipients with priority given to individuals who are of historically underserved communities that are especially vulnerable financially due to this economic crisis —Black, Indigenous, Latinx, foreign-born immigrants, trans, and people with disabilities.  

Convening Schedule

All times Pacific. 

English and Spanish captioning will be provided during morning content.

Speaker bios available here.

Todos los materiales associados con la convocatoria estan disponibles en Español aquí.

10 AM – 11:10 AM

Opening Keynote Conversation


Eli Feghali, Co-Director, New Economy Coalition

Rodney Foxworth, CEO, Common Future 

Angie Kim, President & CEO, Center for Cultural Innovation

11:10 AM - 11:20 AM


11:20 AM - 12:25 PM

Spark Presentations


Laura Hanna, Co-founder, Debt Collective

Gregory Jackson, Board President - Governance Director, East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EBPREC)

David Jette, Legislative Director, Public Bank LA

Ana Siria Urzua, Co-Founder, Cooperación Santa Ana and Luz Maria Martinez, Founder, Cooperativa SaboryArte

Lauren Ruffin, Co-Founder, Crux

12:25 PM - 1:00 PM


1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

Breakout Sessions (see descriptions below)

2:30 PM - 2:45 PM


2:45 PM - 4:00 PM

Virtual Networking


Breakout Session Descriptions

A Magic Leap: Propelling Black Artists to the Forefront of Spatial Computing

Presented by Lauren Ruffin, Co-founder, Crux

Virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality were merely buzzwords before COVID-19 brought the world to a standstill. As the pandemic forces consumers to lean into immersive experiences as a means of intimacy and connection, it's increasingly clear that technology often works in opposition to democracy, consent, and human rights. Can cooperatives provide a foothold for underrepresented groups while carving out an ethical, people-centered niche in a burgeoning spatial computing industry projected to be worth $126 Billion by 2026?

Housing Cooperatives 101

Presented by Gregory Jackson Board President - Governance Director, East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative

The East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EB PREC) will introduce attendees to the basics of housing cooperatives in California, in addition to exploring more deeply EB PREC's model for taking land off the speculative market. Attendees will walk away with a baseline understanding of housing cooperatives, resources for bringing this model to their local community, and an introduction to governance and finance models and templates.

Building our Local Economy

Presented by Debbie Notkin, Board Member, Public Bank East Bay

What do we mean by public banking, and what public banking can do for us as Californians, as artists, and as individuals? In this session, without getting into the weeds of finance, we'll talk about how much money is currently going into the pockets of Wall Street bankers and shareholders, and what that money can be doing for us locally. We'll sum up the state of public banking in California right now, and how COVID-19 has affected that situation. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and be part of an open, wide-ranging discussion, centering on public banking, but also about related topics of money, finance, and debt. We promise, these are not dry and boring conversations, especially when you bring your personal experience to the table.

Worker Coops—A Case Study

Presented by Luz Maria Martinez, Cooperativa SaboryArte

This session will be presented in Spanish with English translation

Luz Maria Martinez de Cooperativa SaboryArte y Cooperación Santa Ana compartirá su experiencia desarrollando tanto su cooperativa de trabajadores en comida artesanal, como el espacio comunitario de comercio equitativo en Santa Ana-- El Mercadito Carrusel. Compartirá los beneficios, logros y retos de formar un negocio con modelo alternativo como es la cooperativa de trabajadores, y hablará de una visión colectiva en Santa Ana de la economía justa, con apoyo mutuo y solidaridad en especial desde las familias de recursos limitados. Además, Luz facilitará un diálogo compartido, invitando a los participantes a hablar de sus retos y experiencias en trabajar en unidad o en grupo, para todxs contestar y ofrecer ideas y soluciones, y así que una experiencia sea aportacion para la otra. 

Luz Maria Martinez from SaboryArte Cooperative and Cooperación Santa Ana will share her experience creating both her own worker cooperative in artisanal foods, as well as a shared community space for equitable commerce in Santa Ana--El Mercadito Carrusel. She will share the benefits, successes, and challenges of forming a business with an alternative model like a worker cooperative, and she will speak about a collective vision in Santa Ana of a just economy with mutual aid and solidarity, especially starting with families with limited resources. In this breakout group, folks will be invited to participate in an open dialogue, sharing their challenges and experiences in working in a united way within a team or group, so that everyone may offer their ideas and solutions, and in this way better understand how the experience of one person contributes to another's.

Debt Collective Assembly

Presented by Debt Collective members, Dawn Lueck and Ami Schneider

The Debt Collective is committed to securing debt relief and improving the lives of our members. In the long-term, organizing in debtors’ common interests is the key to building protections against the consolidation of financial power. We take inspiration from words often attributed to J. Paul Getty: “If you owe the bank $100,000 the bank owns you. If you owe the bank $100 million, you own the bank.”

Together, we own the bank.

Join us for a break-out debtors assembly where we will discuss how we turn our debts into potential power.

Questions? Email commons@cciarts.org.

In-Common is supported in part by: