Art Hives are interactive community spaces that welcomes everyone as an artist, a “third space” focused on arts-based social inclusion. The model and practice of Art Hives have evolved through two decades of sustained practice research, continuous observation and adaptation, and experimentation with spaces and organizational structures led by Dr. Janis Timm-Bottos (Concordia University), who has developed and established six successful art hives in different locations across North America. In the last few years the Montreal-based art hives have garnered much attention and have been highly appreciated by the local community. Funding was acquired to seed a three-year initiative intended to facilitate learning and information-sharing on how both the model and practice of arts-based social inclusion can be replicated or adapted in other communities, both locally and across Canada.

The percolab team collaborated with the researcher team to explore, formalize and disseminate the Art Hive practice across Canada. This involved an integrated approach for a live event and online community support tools. Percolab co-organised a pan-canadian symposium of three days, with 50 participants ; a creative and participatory experience to support the diverse initiatives emerging across the country and the development of an Art Hive community. A stylish online space was developed to support the community in collaborating beyond the event – http://www.arthives.org/ –  it helps federate and inspire an open and self-organizing community. percolab also created an open-source branding for the emerging movement.

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