Community artists research, plan, organise and lead artistic activities for people brought together by a shared interest, capacity, environment or condition. They manage and coordinate creative projects with local groups and individuals to foster their artistic creativity and improve their quality of life. Community artists make the arts accessible to the community they work for, and provide opportunities for participants to shape their artistic programme.
The following job titles also refer to community artist:
community arts practitioner
community drama artist
community dance leader
community dance artist
community & participatory artist
artist & community facilitator
artist in mediation
community arts project leader
community arts worker
community dance practitioner
community arts facilitator
No formal educational credential is generally required to work as community artist. However, this requirement may differ in some countries.
ISCO skill level
ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:
- the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
- the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
- the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.
Community artist is a Skill level 4 occupation.
Community artist career path
These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to community artist.
Long term prospects
These occupations require some skills and knowledge of community artist. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of community artist with a significant experience and/or extensive training.
Essential knowledge and skills
This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of community artist.
Labour legislation: Legislation, on a national or international level, that governs labour conditions in various fields between labour parties such as the government, employees, employers, and trade unions.
Intellectual property law: The regulations that govern the set of rights protecting products of the intellect from unlawful infringement.
Art history: The history of art and artists, the artistic trends throughout centuries and their contemporary evolutions.
Essential skills and competences
These skills are necessary for the role of community artist.
Develop awareness for your group participants: Identify and record the learning that has taken place both for individuals in the group and for yourself to support development of quality in the work produced.
Evaluate focus of community arts practice: Evaluate your working practices before, within and after the sessions using feedback from a variety of sources to support your judgment. Recognise not only where you should be developing your own skills, or applying changes to the program design, but also what aspects of your professional practice can be outsourced to enable you to concentrate on your sessions. Identify where you are under-resourced, reflect on this and think creatively about how to reshape your dance offer to be clear about what you can and cannot take on. Interpret the data collected to create a report of your findings.
Develop a coaching style: Develop a style for coaching individuals or groups that ensures all participants are at ease, and are able to acquire the necessary skills and competences provided in the coaching in a positive and productive manner.
Manage participants’ expectations: Build trust and relationships with all stakeholders. Articulate how your artistic discipline (dance, music, theater, visual arts…) can variously benefit, and support the needs and aspirations of, individuals and communities. Manage expectations of people involved once the community arts programme is designed or being designed. Be as clear as possible in the scoping stage to build trust between yourself, your potential groups, and funders. Be aware of social agendas, specially in government funded programs.
Develop educational resources: Create and develop educational resources for visitors, school groups, families and special interest groups.
Direct community arts activities: Devise and deliver participatory community arts activities that protect the health and safety of yourself and participants to be able to draw out the most effective learning. Take into account the whole experience of the art session.
Communicate with target community: Identify and implement the best channels of communication for the community you are looking to work with.
Research your target community: Match your skills with your research on the needs of the target community.
Confer on artwork: Introduce and discuss the nature and content of art work, achieved or to be produced with an audience, art directors, catalogue editors, journalists, and other parties of interest.
Develop educational activities: Develop speeches, activities and workshops in order to foster access and comprehension to the artistic creation processes. It can address a particular cultural and artistic event such as a show or an exhibition, or it can be related to a specific discipline (theatre, dance, drawing, music, photography etc.). Liaise with storytelles, craftspeople and artists.
Contextualise artistic work: Identify influences and situate your work within a specific trend which may be of an artistic, aesthetic, or philosophical natures. Analyse the evolution of artistic trends, consult experts in the field, attend events, etc.
Develop cultural activities: Develop activities adapted to the outreach and/or audience. Take into account difficulties and needs observed and identified from the perspective of enhancing curiosity and general capability to access to art and culture.
Assess community arts programme resources: Identify the intellectual, theoretical, or physical resources or supplies available to develop your mediation practice. Identify what further support you may need from other artists, other specialists (physiotherapists, physicians…), supporting workers, etc. Identify the administrative support you need and plan how it can be outsourced.
Collaborate with stakeholders in leading community arts: Collaborate with a chosen team, gathering artists from other disciplines, art mediation coordinator, and/or health workers, physiotherapists and learning support workers, etc. in order to maximise the community arts program’s impact. Be clear about your collective roles, and evaluate their performance as a whole combining reflexive and reflective in your practice.
Manage personal professional development: Take responsibility for lifelong learning and continuous professional development. Engage in learning to support and update professional competence. Identify priority areas for professional development based on reflection about own practice and through contact with peers and stakeholders.
Interact with an audience: Convey the artistic values of the art form(s). Respond to the reactions of your audience and involve them.
Work with respect for own safety: Apply the safety rules according to training and instruction and based on a solid understanding of the prevention measures and risks to your own personal health and safety.
Define artistic approach: Define your own artistic approach by analysing your previous work and your expertise, identifying the components of your creative signature, and starting from these explorations to describe your artistic vision.
Balance participants’ personal needs with group needs: Apply a variety of approaches in your practice that balances the needs of each individual with that of the group as a whole. Strengthen each individual’s capability and experience, known as person centred practice, while at the same time stimulating the participants and support workers to form a cohesive group. Create a supportive and safe atmosphere for an active exploration of your artistic discipline.
Develop artistic coaching programme: Develop and administer a coaching programme specific to the artistic project and performing individuals.
Participate in artistic mediation activities: Participate in cultural and artistic mediation activities: announce the activity, give a presentation or talk related to a piece of art or an exhibition, teach a class or a group, lead artistic mediation activities, lead or participate in a public discussion.
Assess your competencies in leading community arts: Evaluate and communicate your skills in leading community activities, especially any other complementary experience that may be advantageous.
Optional knowledge and skills
This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of community artist. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
Be in touch with your body: The key aspects of applied anatomy, psychology, nutrition, physiology, and psychosocial studies and how they relate to the self-awareness of one’s body.
Theatre techniques: Understand techniques that facilitate a successful presentation of a play.
Optional skills and competences
These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of community artist. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
Read scripts: Read a playbook or film script, not only as literature, but identifying, actions, emotional states, evolution of characters, situations, different sets and locations, etc.
Employ pedagogic strategies to facilitate creative engagement: Communicate to others on devising and facilitating creative processes through the use of a range of tasks and activities appropriate to the target group.
Manage artistic project: Manage an artistic project. Determine project needs. Establish partnerships. Manage the budget, schedule, contractual agreements and assess the project.
Demonstrate technical expertise of your dance style: Demonstrate, describe or correct movement with your participants to enable them learn about their body and the dance style one is delivering in the participants. Compose and structure dance with the participants in the chosen dance style. Communicate the creative and compositional skills and experience and their relevance to the target market.
Develop artistic project budgets: Developing artistic project budgets for approval, estimating deadlines and material costs.
Keep personal administration: File and organise personal administration documents comprehensively.
Present exhibition: Present an exhibition and give educational lectures in a comprehensible way that is attractive to the public.
Coordinate artistic production: Oversee the day-to-day coordination of production tasks so that the organisation fits within the desired artistic and business policies and in order to present productions in a uniform corporate identity to the public.
Participate in music studio recordings: Take part in recording sessions in music studios.
ISCO group and title
2659 – Creative and performing artists not elsewhere classified
- Community artist – ESCO