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Welcome the pro-ams to your cultural hub

July 26, 2005

The Institute of Contemporary Art in London has always been at the forefront of progressive thinking about art. The small gallery prides itself in pushing the envelope and creating interesting debate about broad issues and topics. It’s this eclectic tradition that’s kept the ICA on the radar for the last 50 years. Always engaging, they have taken their mission a stage further by inviting their users/visitors to participate in the creation of content.

On August 12, the ICA will create their own “Speaker’s Corner” in St James Square, where anyone can talk on a subject they are passionate about for 15 minutes. If you are in or near London you can email your subject to, before August 2nd. That night, they will also host a DJ Corner, allowing aspiring amateur DJs 15 minutes to spin their favorite pieces of vinyl.

The best museums and galleries have always tried to engage their users, above and beyond the shows and exhibitions, by hosting talks and classes. However, with the burgeoning pro-am movement, perhaps museums and galleries could not only showcase the new talent that is bubbling up from the grassroots, but openly invite them to participate. Doing this can only serve enhance the role of these institutions as “cultural hubs.”

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