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567 Tremont Street | Boston, MA 02118



By donating to Boston APP/Lab, you'll be helping to strengthen community through the arts in Greater Boston's public places.


Boston APP/LAB hosts periodic workshops with the intention of bringing together creative and interested participants from a myriad of backgrounds. Workshops are lively, discussion based meetings centered around ever revolving themes. All are welcome, all are encouraged.

Have an idea for a workshop? Let us know!

Beginnings of the ArtsCommons at an early Workshop. 


Art in the Public Realm: Forging, Reflecting, Informing Urban Identities

  • How does one develop site-specific public art projects which provide opportunities for all- adults and kids, those from various socio-economic backgrounds, to participate?

  • How can mural arts projects create a platform for engagement and interaction?

  • Discover speaker Pedro Alonzo's presentation here

Augmented Reality

  • What new opportunities does AR open up for civic participation?

  • How can AR "democratize" art?

Making Public Art for Civic Engagement

  • How can public art intentionally or otherwise, trigger civil engagement?

  • What forms could such public art take?

The Function of Public Art is to Transform the Way People Respond to Each Other

  • Art itself helps to craft community

  • What kinds of "rituals" can be generated through art in public places?


Arts in Public Places as Tools for Individual and Community Healing

  • Artists can create contexts – space, structure – for contributions by/from the community

  • People crossing boundaries, going to places they normally wouldn’t go


Civic Innovation, Digital Media, and Arts in Public Places

  • Joint effort with Emerson’s Engagement Lab

  • Metaphor, at all scales, as power tool for civic engagement

  • New ways of building social networks, focusing on collaboration

Facing History: Enriching Boston's Historic Places Through Art

  • Role of art in “extruding” history from a place

  • Version of “Pokemon Go” that reveals history instead of creatures

  • “Humans of New York” as model for engaging with places

From Apps to Arts in Public Places: Coding for Creative Technologies and Spirits

  • How to expand from CfB’s community-drive approach to app- making to something comparable for art-making in public places

  • Integrate creative technologies and urban strategies to make cities better for people living in them

Boston APP/Lab Goes to Boston Arts Academy's STEAM Lab

  • What model of collaborative work does the STEAM Lab hold for artists working in public spaces – including schools!?

Food & Arts: A Marriage in the Public Market

  • Communicate the Boston Public Market/The Kitchen experience beyond the walls and downtown

  • Create “community table”: Humans of New York → Humans of the Public Market

ArtsCommons on the Ground

  • Create/sustain dialogue with community to find out what the ArtsCommons means to them

  • ArtsCommons/”black box” as means of creating place of activity: to draw, engage, connect people

ArtsCommons in the Community

  • Travel/create links to other neighborhoods: what does ArtsCommons “pick up” along the way?

  • Tie in with parklet initiatives

  • Detachable panels to serve as canvases for neighborhood graffiti


Art in Public Places: Let's Face the Music

  • The need for busking-specific infrastructure throughout Boston

  • Separate, or the same, value propositions for public, artists, politicians?

Creative Community Building: Institutional Collaboration, Local Results

  • MACDC and Rose Kennedy Greenway at the table

  • Collaboration allows “big vision” to take root

  • How CDCs are weaving arts, culture, creative place-making into their work

The City as Art: Urban Design as Catalyst for Art in Public Places

  • Design spaces/interventions that generate agency among users

  • Some key strategies for street-art – guerrilla-style and otherwise

Design in Collaboration: Re-Imagining Places Through Art and Community

  • Rose Architecture Fellowship at the table

  • Collaborative action builds trust/builds of strengthens communities

  • Social and community context can/should shape design

  • Increase opportunities for people in neighborhoods to be part of what happens around them

Art As Play: What, Where, for Whom?

  • How to prompt spontaneous play in public spaces

  • From social games to found games using urban infrastructure to sound/work/tech play

ArtsCommons and the Three P's: Physical Structure, Programming, Partnerships

  • Curation by neighborhoods, plus outreach to artists/organizations

  • Participatory “museum” for work originating in individual neighborhood

Making the ArtsCommons Come Alive: How? For Whom?

  • Provide ability for artists/works to respond to viewers’ inputs

  • Pop-up shop tactics as model for use/re-use of “armature”

  • See Video!

ArtsCommons: Sharing Resources & Linking Disciplines to Create Art in Public Places

  • Public installation with which people can interact

  • Ex.: a sonic playground walk; public chalkboard

Open Web, Art, and the Civic Realm

  • Browser as “collaborative canvas”

  • Interrelationships among open web, civic realm, public art?

  • Create an on-line “commons”: cf. dancydots; cellflight; etc.

Intersection of Technology and Art in Public Places

  • Collaboration with Catalyst Conversations

  • Strategies for involving – and empowering -- the public as co-creators

More Than Pipes: Enriching Public Spaces Through Virtual, Social, Physical infastructure

  • Identify public and private physical and social resources not currently being used

  • Art and infrastructure/art as infrastructure

Art and Design as Practical Social Action

  • Allow community to speak to/with itself

  • Art that engenders/propels civic value in communities

Beyond the One-Shot Deal: Art in Public Places, New Development, and the Long View

  • Partnerships with developers: art as ingredient for increasing economic value

  • Create culture of saying “yes,” without long planning/permitting process

  • Provide accessible tools: allow people to play with them

Lessons From Cambridge's Magazine Beach

  • Public spaces as venue for pop-ups

  • Prove viability and develop community around it

Tactical Urbanism/ Tactical Art

  • Combine community activity with physical activity

An Architect, and Artist, and A Developer Walk Into A Bar...

  • Create relatable piece of art that are meaningful/connect to place

Making It Happen: Who Need to Know How to Bring Art to Greater Boston's Public Places

  • Daylighting the process of making art in public places

  • Introducing the BostonAPP Gameboard

Public Art Meets Urban Design

  • Function of Public Art: transform the way people respond to each other

Creative Strategies/Practices/Collaborations

  • How does a project have the capacity to “build community?”

  • Define “build community”

Collaboration at Urban/Neighborhood Scale

January 01, 2020

  • Somerville Honk! Festival as model

  • Explore opportunities for cross-border festivals/installations

Building A Networking/Communication Strategy and Implementation Plan

  • From creative financing strategies to informal meet-ups

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