Faculty Member Julia Csekö Named Create the Vote Fellow

February 23, 2022

Faculty member Julia Csekö has been named one of MASSCreative’s Create the Vote Fellows!

The fellowship is a yearlong learning community for grassroots organizers focused on building advocacy, creating knowledge, and sustaining political power in Massachusetts’ arts and cultural sector.

Per MassCreative: “Over the next 11 months, Create the Vote Fellows will develop their grassroots organizing knowledge and strengthen their professional network through sharing, learning, networking and mentorship. A key feature of the Fellowship will be co-designing a strategy to strengthen and support local and regional networks of arts and cultural advocates. Create the Vote Fellows will also work collaboratively with a broader coalition for arts and cultural advocates in the Commonwealth to engage votes and candidates in the 2022 statewide elections. The Create the Vote Fellowship is generously supported by the Barr Foundation.”

Csekö is one of nine artists and cultural leaders in the fellowship’s inaugural class. Her organizational experience comes from her time living in Rio, where she was part of a group who successfully demanded an increase from 0.3% to 1% of the Brazilian national budget to be dedicated to Arts and Culture. Speaking directly, Csekö said:

“I am interested in advocating and organizing locally at Somerville, where I have lived for the past 10 years. There’s a strong arts community in the area, and at the same time, there’s a need for spaces, equity, and representation. Artists keep being pushed out as a result of gentrification. I have also identified a generalized lack of funding for Arts and Culture, especially when it comes to individual artists – but also organizations and nonprofits. I would like to see many more options for sustainably funding work in the arts and culture sector.  This scarcity became particularly apparent during the pandemic. I hope to join the already vibrant and vocal Somerville Community in improving living and working conditions locally. In time I hope to expand my networks and hopefully be involved in some capacity with regional advocacy supporting the cultural sector. I am looking forward to getting a better grasp of regional advocacy through the Create the Vote MassCreative Initiative.”

We’re excited to see where Julia and MassCreative goes in the future.