The Michelada Think Tank is a group of socially conscious artists, educators, and activists of color hosting conversations with other people of color (PoC) and allies who are also socially-engaged artists, educators, and activists and/or interested in creative ways of making change happen. MTT is interested in facilitating conversations and creating community around issues faced by people of color while promoting action beyond the discussion.
The Michelada Think Tank grew out of the Open Engagement Tally, an intervention in which a group of artists distributed a postcard listing the racial demographics of presenters at the 2014 Open Engagement conference for socially engaged artists in Queens, NY. The demographics of the presenters reflected existing racial disparities in higher education, museum attendance, and the art world at large. As a response, the artists who initiated the OE Tally convened the Michelada Think Tank, a loose network of artists, culture workers, and community organizers interested in the relationship between art and social change. The Michelada Think Tank held its first discussion event at the 18th Street Arts Center Open Studios Tour in July 2014, in which participants were asked to respond to the question, “How can people of color who are interested in creative ways of making change happen support each other within a context of low representation in traditional or ‘official’ art contexts?”