International Current Art
Research & Development Institute
(est. 2002 - inc. 2009)
UNESCO “Member states, recognizing the essential role of art in the life and development of the individual and of society…should take all necessary steps to stimulate artistic creativity and the flowering of talent, in particular by adopting measures to secure greater freedom for artists.” (Recommendations concerning the ‘Status of the Artist’, General Conference UNESCO, 21st Session, Belgrade, Sept. 23 to Oct. 28, 1980)*
As Lunenburg, Nova Scotia makes plans to develop its historic waterfront, now is an ideal time to consider an opportunity very much in keeping with the fundamental mission of UNESCO - of which the town itself is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Agency: Dialectic - Local Heritage / International Current Art -
This proposal seeks to commit a portion of the waterfront development as an international arts and cultural district: a set of buildings, or at the very least a portion of land, which will one day serve as a center of welcome for cultural groups and creative professionals from around the world. This International Zone for Arts & Culture would feature everything considered essential for nurturing creativity, including studios, a school and a gallery; in essence, a center for artists from around the world to come together and share their experiences, techniques - and art.
This proposal is well within the mandate of the Town of Lunenburg - to foster mixed industrial zoning that includes an international arts & cultural district. In fact, two Nova Scotia towns have already proven with great success how a local movement started at the municipal level can go on to spawn global success: Pugwash for the International Peace Movement, their Nobel prize-winning peace conference; and the renowned Coady Institute of Antigonish for the International Co-op Movement.
One art & cultural organization already exists in support of this proposal - the International Current Art • Research and Development Institute. ICA•RDI is seeking to establish an annual summertime base for a variety of arts-related activities including an international summer school, an artist-in-residence program and a symposium on the UNESCO Status of the Artist. The model for ICA•RDI’s mission is the Banff Centre for the Arts, the highly respected program that has transformed another small Canadian town into an international destination.
Brian L. MacNevin is the ICA•RDI Ambassador and originator of the concept that led to this proposal. A native of Nova Scotia and summer resident of Lunenburg, BL has worked over the past several years to see this concept come to fruition. At such a pivotal stage of its waterfront development and as a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lunenburg is in an ideal position to create a setting that would become a beacon for artistic freedom.
Additional information on Status of the Artist legislation:
*UNESCO Status of the Artist Act, Sept./Oct. 1980:
Canadian Status of the Artist Act, June 1992:
Nova Scotia Status of the Artist Act, May 2012:
Additional information on the ICA•RDI proposition: Google "ICARDI Lunenburg" or visit Facebook Group "Friends of ICARDI" please become a member (link above).