American Dialogues: From State Dinners to State Diners brings artists “to the table” for timely and dynamic conversations with leaders from across society. Breaking the conventions of formal conference presentations, American Dialogues take place during a celebratory meal, fostering intimate exchange and engagement among great minds. Each table features a specific theme and be co-hosted by one artist and one business, civic, education or cultural leader as determined by ANH and program partners. In addition to the co-hosts, each table has four to six additional guests representing diverse voices and areas of leadership from American society. Guests include business, scientific, civic, educational and cultural leaders. One seat at each table is reserved for a member of Artist Corps who will appropriately document the conversation (audio/still image), pending the nature of the event.
America: Now and Here works with partner organizations to determine co-hosts for American Dialogue tables in order to match affinities based on work and interest in compelling and timely ideas, questions or issues. Table guests can pre-register based on their choice of theme and co-hosts or be pre-assigned. A private viewing of America: Now and Here with performances of music and theater scenes by ANH artists serves as a prelude for American Dialogues. While the co-hosts initiate and drive each table’s conversation, the shape of the round tables supports democratic participation among all guests. A wonderful meal, prepared by a team of celebrated chefs, is an important component of each American Dialogue experience.
American Dialogues is designed to engage specific audiences, from emerging artists to global thought leaders to high school students.
Typical table themes:
- Great Journeys – How have great journeys from the past inspired us to take risks, to explore, and to redefine our horizons?
- Art and Democracy – What is the role of art and the artist in American society?
- How We Learn – Stories about teachers who “made all the difference” will seed a conversation about re-imagining education.
- Breaking the Rules – Rule breaking is key to the creative process. Participants’ stories about rule breaking will reveal insights into breakthroughs in art, science, technology and business.
- Paying Attention – Is the shortening of our individual and culture-wide attention spans a problem or an evolution?
- Visual Literacy: From Looking to Seeing – Experiencing art with a visual artist and a scientist will offer an unparalleled opportunity to explore human perception.
- Consuming Art – From nourishing the soul to an economic commodity, participants will discuss how art can be repositioned for the common and greater good.
- Passion – Why do artists make art? Why do collectors buy it? We all have stories about a moment of passion as we made, engaged with or consumed art.
- 21st Century Renaissance – This table is for one artist, one scientist, one inventor, one entrepreneur, one educator and one civic leader. What would happen if, together, you could lead the next decade?
- The America: Now and Here experience inspires a rich variety of themes and ideas.