The Make America Great Again billboard along Highway 80 in Pearl, Mississippi, by For Freedoms, the first artist-run Super PAC and one of a number of arts organizations working with the Artist Campaign School. Photo: Wyatt Gallery

Artist Advocacy Group Launches Boot Camp to Help Artists Run for Office

The New York–based arts advocacy group Fractured Atlas has launched a new initiative that aims to help artists learn the skills necessary to run a successful political campaign, Isaac Kaplan of Artsy reports. The nonpartisan Artist Campaign School aims to encourage more artists to run for public office. Around one hundred creatives will be invited to attend free classes in Detroit this October where they will learn how to fundraise, build a staff, communicate with the media, and write policy, among other things.

“I think artists are actually perfect politicians,” said Lauren Ruffinm, the vice president for external affairs at Fractured Atlas and the brains behind the project. According to Ruffinm, who realized the need for such an initiative during the 2016 presidential campaign, many artists are already equipped for a political career path. They are creative thinkers, problem solvers, and able to work collaboratively to realize projects. While programming for the school is still in its early stages, Ruffinm hopes to involve artists who have served as politicians in the training. Short-term goals of the school include flooding low-level positions with candidates.

The project received twenty-seven applications since its website went live last Friday. The accepted applicants will also be asked to work together to build a platform on affordable housing, healthcare, or arts in education. “You’re fed up. You want to get involved. We hear you,” the school’s website reads. “Whether it’s for the school board or Senate, learn what it takes.”