AIC Summer School

2021 Autumn School on Cultural Diversity and Collaborative Practice

2021 Autumn School on Cultural Diversity and Collaborative Practice
Participants at the 2018 Summer School on Cultural Diversity and Collaborative Practice, held in Carlingford, Co. Louth. Photo: Aoife Herrity

Create and Counterpoints Arts are pleased to announce the 2021 School on Cultural Diversity and Collaborative Practice for up to 12 artists. Due to ongoing COVID-19 restrictions and social distancing, we will host the 2021 School virtually over five days: 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd, 29th of October. The Autumn School is an initiative of The Arts Council’s Artist in the Community (AIC) Scheme, managed by Create.

About the Autumn School

The virtual Autumn School is shaped by global and translocal practices. It is fundamentally informed by the diverse life experiences and creative practices of participants and the work and mentoring of visiting facilitators. The  focus of learning in the School is enabled by an exploration of the critical space between the lived realities of cultural diversity and the connective methodologies and collective actions underpinning collaborative practice.

The School is interdisciplinary in its curriculum and composition of participants, presenters and facilitators. Together we will explore what cultural diversity means in practice – in people’s intimate lives, in neighbourhoods and within communities of place and interest. Lines of inquiry include the following questions, among others:

  • The concept of cultural diversity is often narrowly (sometimes stereotypically) read through the lens of policy, but how does the practice of cultural diversity resonate as an intersectional and dynamic part of everyday life? And by extension how might the language around cultural diversity be challenged and repositioned?
  • How might the experience of cultural diversity be enacted in the context of collaborative arts practice and vice versa?
  • How can cultural diversity and working cooperatively form an intrinsic part of the artistic, socially engaged process, acting as a powerful driver for social change in both local communities and within arts organisations?
  • How to understand the critical intersection of cultural diversity and collaborative arts practice in the context of decolonisation and the urgency of global racial justice movements?

The 2021 School will take the form of a five-day virtual residency enabling a ‘think and do’ collaborative approach, utilizing creative workshops, critical and comparative case studies, a creative group challenge, one-to-one mentoring, international guest artists including curators, policymakers and activists.

The deadline for submission to be part of the School is the 30 August 2021, 5pm. You will find guidelines and an online application form linked on this page.


Directed by: Dr Áine O’Brien – Curator of Learning and Research and Co-Founder, Counterpoints Arts


Isabel Lima, Independent Artist and Director of The Gresham Horse project

Visiting artists and facilitators include:

Dana Olărescu,  Independent Artist and Cultural Activist

Ismail Einashe, Investigative Journalist and Cultural Activist

Nike Jonah, Executive Director of PACE (Pan-African Creative Exchange)

Dominik Czechowski, International Curator, Researcher and Writer


Artist in the Community Scheme (AIC)

A key aim of the Autumn School is to create a peer-to-peer space in which to explore the concept of cultural diversity and collaborative practice through the lens of the Artist in the Community Scheme (AIC), which has to date resulted in rich cultural ecosystems and cross-sector methodologies.

The AIC scheme aims to encourage and support meaningful collaboration between artists and communities of place and/or interest, and supports dynamic collaborations across  art forms and context areas across the country.



related programme
Artist in the Community Scheme

Counterpoints Arts
Isabel Lima
Dana Olărescu
Nike Jonah
Ismail Einashe

Autumn School 2021 - Programme