The Power of an Intervention

Dialogue for change

Sarah Pickthall
Nov 23, 2017 · 2 min read
Image for post
Image for post

A highlight of my working year has to be the Museums Association’sFestival of Change’, a discrete yet integral strand to this year’s MA Annual Conference in Manchester and for me, a thing of curiosity and wonder.

As someone who has been working closely this year with the MA’s mid career leadership programme, MATransformers, and as a long standing exponent of Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion training for organisations in its various guises, I’ve been convinced, thanks to working alongside Jess Turtle, Hilary Carty and the rest of the MATransformers team, by the power of radical action and intervention, especially when driven by those with a lived experience of discrimination, delivering how it really is, in creative, accessible and pertinent ways.

The side show interventions at the Festival of Change inadvertently became the pith and the punch of the main event. Developed through an application process and shaped and delivered by MATransformers to run at the conference, interventions ranged from Escape to the Museum of Woe to The White Privilege Clinic alongside the Nail Transphobia Salon — jointly winning won the Best Product accolade. Not to mention the brilliant #MuseumsFailure Confessional where delegates were able to fess their personal or institutional failures and the wonderful Iraqi Chai, tea and biscuits and conversations about the experiences of #Iraqiwomenartwar.

Image for post
Image for post
Image for post
Image for post
Nail Transphobia — Charlie Craggs (L) & #Iraqiwomenartwar (R)

At the heart of these interventions was the importance of conversation and dialogue, taking time to talk about the serious issues we all need to grapple with and the uneasy truths that pervade. Evaluation will out the impact of these and the other brilliant challenges but it’s safe to say that Festival of Change as a discrete artistic activist movement is more than worthy of another little outing.

Sarah Pickthall

Written by

Sarah Pickthall

A blog by Sarah Pickthall — transitional coach working with individuals and organisations across Arts & Culture, Education and Business Sectors. Find out more at sarahpickthall.com

Sarah Pickthall

Written by

Sarah Pickthall

A blog by Sarah Pickthall — transitional coach working with individuals and organisations across Arts & Culture, Education and Business Sectors. Find out more at sarahpickthall.com

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store