The Artolution is a community-based public art organization that seeks to ignite positive social change through creative, participatory and collaborative art making. We facilitate projects around the world that connect diverse peoples in order to address common social objectives. Our projects bring together children, youth, families, artists, educators and community groups. Our founding objective is to address critical issues related to armed conflict, trauma and social marginalization by cultivating sustainable global initiatives that promote reconciliation, healing and community empowerment.
The Artolution is founded in participatory and collaborative art making. Our process empowers artists, youth and communities to be agents of positive social change, explore critical societal issues and create opportunities for constructive dialogue.
We believe that the process of creating collaborative art is a powerful tool to bring diverse communities together in the face of conflict and social turmoil in order to address challenges that they face. Artolution projects engage youth and communities that have faced social exclusion and trauma, including refugees, street youth, the incarcerated, people with physical and mental disabilities, and young people living in areas of violent conflict or extreme poverty. These projects have been organized and facilitated in partnerships with local artists and educators, grass-roots community groups, schools, religious centers and international institutions in over 20 countries across Latin America, Africa, North America, the Middle East, Europe and South Asia.
We utilize visual public art mediums such as mural art and community sculpture, as well as street performance genres like dance, theatre and music. In our workshops, participants explore important community issues and collectively decide on the subject and content of the artistic production, culminating in the collaborative creation of works of public art. Through this process, we emphasize the building of positive relationships among participants, skill-building, the sharing of knowledge and the encouragement of community activism.
The Artolution began as a community-based public art initiative founded by US-based artist Max Frieder in 2009. In 2015, he and like-minded community artist Joel Bergner, whose work had followed a similar trajectory, joined forces as co-directors to launch the Artolution as an international organization that partners with community-based artists, educators and institutions around the world.