Arts Community Leaders Talk Tech During MAMP Lab
The panel was brought together to shed light on the inevitable merger of the arts and tech worlds, but the conversation also turned to issues of humanity and sacred spaces. That’s what transpired at the recent MAMP Lab, the final in a series of marketing workshops hosted by the Arts & Business Council of Miami. It was appropriately held at downtown’s Venture Hive tech hub space.
The MAMP Lab is the first in a new initiative launched by the Arts & Business Council as an effort to foster collaborative ventures between the arts and tech communities.
Serving as facilitator was Chris Sopher, founder and CEO of The New Tropic, who led the discussion on how to merge the worlds of arts and technology.
CEO and founder of amp.it, Derrick (DNA) Ashong, a passionate entrepreneur whose love of music led him to found the site that rewards music fans for liking music, said “we should be looking at tech and innovation as a way to connect all of humanity.”
That statement kicked the morning off and the conversation grew from there with Siggi Bachmann, creative director at the New World Symphony, who said “at the end of the day, technology and art is about bridging the gap between the market and an idea.”
The panelists brought a fresh perspective and insight into how they are bridging that gap and what has worked for them.
At the Patricia and Phillip Frost Science Museum, Chief Science Officer Dr. Eldredge Bermingham said they are providing a forum for cultural organizations to speak about their own artistic or scientific inclinations, a platform that allows them to play a larger role in the conversation.
Roberto Interiano, mentor and director of MEDO at Venture Hive, said that “from a business perspective, when you’re creating a venture it reminds me a little of the arts and how you need to find some way of sponsorship to go through the cycle.” Noting how important it is for both arts and tech communities to thrive, he said they can only accomplish that if they see it as a form of investment and have a shared passion to find either investors or customers.
At Yone Arts, Paula Tin Nyo said their foundation’s mission is to create a sacred space, and convey that to the public and touch people’s lives. “They are given that moment of grace by interacting in our space and seeing our performances. There is a hunger for that sacred space in today’s society,” she said.
The Q&A that followed found participants asking questions about developing online apps as well as inquiring about the go-to Websites and places to go to locally for innovation.
Suggestions included Artsy, Art Local, and Simi for visual arts, along with Refresh Miami and even Google. Following the tech blog by Miami Herald’s Nancy Dahlberg as well as keeping up with the happenings at Tech.co — a Miami division of Tech Cocktail — Recode.net, and Meetup.com were suggested, given that they are good app development tools. Attending events at co-working spaces like The Lab, We Work, and MADE at the Citadel where frequent hack-a-thon and coding events are held, also helps.
Echoed by all the panelists was the need to talk to your members and audience to determine what they really want, and from that information build your own platform and stay informed on how it is working.
To offer the participants a starting point to work from at the conclusion of the morning’s workshop, they broke into groups to discuss and identify an issue or challenge they’re dealing with about art and technology. The task was to summarize that challenge into one sentence.
Armed with that one statement, it’s a tool offered by the panelists that workshop participants can now begin to use to formulate a plan for merging the worlds of art and technology.