Choose your partner.
In choosing a collaborator, considerations can include skill sets, resources, temperaments – but most importantly, find someone who is willing to dive into the unknown. You’ll want to find someone who is willing to share, grow, and inspire with you.
Begin on an equal playing field.
This is often impossible. So if you can’t begin here, find a way to get here. Maybe this is with transparency and trust. Maybe this is agreeing to terms. This can be as simple or as complex as a contract.
Consider the aim or intent of what you’re doing. Ask why. Consider the structure. Ask why. Consider the process. Ask why. You get the picture…If something is status quo, ask why. If something is implied, ask why. An important follow up may be how.
Communication is key. 50% of communication is listening. It is as important to speak as it is to listen, if not more so. There is so much to learn through listening. Listening can also include watching, sitting with, and considering. Listening is a sign of respect for your partner. Listening is an acknowledgement that you don’t know everything. Listening is an opportunity.
Take the pressure off. Jump up and down, shake it out. Great ideas don’t come from fear. They come from play. A what if state of mind. In order to truly play, one has to feel safe. Remember, if you haven’t created a space of trust, you won’t be able to play.
Don’t be afraid to erase, cross out, rehash, or start over.
The best idea is rarely the first idea. Part of the process is being wrong, not quite getting it, fine tuning, etc.
A few thoughts on collaboration…
From a young age, I learned the value of collaboration. I learned to see the richness that comes from togetherness, the strength of a vision when it includes more than your own. Collaboration is not always easy, but it is rewarding when done right. What constitutes ‘right’ can be slippery, and oftentimes we get it wrong.
Live in America is a collaboration years in the making. The beauty is, so is the Momentary, and so is Northwest Arkansas. You can really make the case that collaboration is our throughline, our bloodline.
Live in America is made up of a multitude of minds, ideas, conversations, decisions, lives, spirits, and practices, converging in a festival. The Momentary as both a structure and as an organization runs on the collective efforts of departments, relationships and mediums practicing its very ethos as an interdisciplinary site. Northwest Arkansas in its continued expansion inspires methods of shared resources, knowledge, and histories while catapulting itself into the future. These separate entities are in themselves made up of mini and many collaborations. Together they move in circular relations between site, region, people, power, and vision. They are in constant flux…expanding and contracting….In October 2021 we’ll see these collaborations take shape in physical and energetic ways. My hope is that the fuse of the festival will not die out. I want to see it pour into the cracks and crevices of this region, this site, these people…that the stories, lessons we experience here and now will live on for generations to come…teaching us a better way of being…together.