Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute and the Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network Gather for Second Forum

Mike Lawson • News • August 31, 2017

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Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute (WMI) and the Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network (AIYN) will gather over 100 arts and justice leaders from across the U.S. on September 25 and 26 in Los Angeles for the second of three national Create Justice forums.

These forums are focused exclusively on arts and youth justice and aim to generate a national network of thought leaders dedicated to fostering creative strategies to work toward justice reform through opportunities in the arts.

At the second Create Justice forum in September, policymakers, artists, funders, activists, researchers, and leaders from non-profit organizations and government agencies will work towards creating a national plan of action. The forums include a series of collaborative discussions, workshops, and artist performances that hone in on ways for youth to succeed during and after justice involvement.

The forum is led in part by Marc Bamuthi Joseph, chief of program and pedagogy at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. He is also a recipient of the Guggenheim Social Practice initiative and the U.S. Artists Rockefeller Fellowship.

This forum will bring participants to Los Angeles’s new youth detention facility — Campus Kilpatrick — and therefore allow them to understand and witness a new innovative LA Model that seeks to reform youth detention into a restorative and supportive model of care over corrections.

Create Justice will also hold a Youth Leadership Workshop at the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena and a pop-up exhibit at the Armory Center for the Arts on September 25 that is open to the public.

 “These conversations are truly a unique process,” said Kaile Shilling, executive director of arts for Incarcerated Youth Network. “What’s exciting is that the whole series of forums are themselves modeling a process of collaboration — between emerging young leaders and those with years of expertise in the field, between artists and policymakers, between community and government agencies — that’s all grounded in the arts. The way participants are approaching this is itself part of the solution,” added Shilling.

“Create Justice brings together people with a variety of different perspectives who share a belief that the arts can be a tool in reform of the juvenile justice system, and moving toward a more inclusive, restorative approach to juvenile justice,” said Sarah Johnson, director of Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute. “In the first forum, we heard powerfully the need for young people to be at the table with us in discussions about systems that will impact their lives and the lives of other young people across the country. Collaborative work with young people will therefore be a central part of the upcoming meetings in Los Angeles this fall, and in New York City in March. I’m looking forward to the development of important ideas and concepts from the first forum, and to seeing how these begin to become concrete, actionable strategies for the future.” 

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