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Introducing 'The ARTery 25,' A Celebration Of Creative Millennials Of Color In Boston Arts

The ARTery 25 celebration takes place on March 28 at WBUR's CitySpace. (Illustration by Arielle Gray/WBUR)
The ARTery 25 celebration takes place on March 28 at WBUR's CitySpace. (Illustration by Arielle Gray/WBUR)

What makes a city thrive? Many factors, certainly: healthy educational institutions that foster upward mobility and intellectual curiosity, infrastructure that can withstand future growth, a diverse landscape of industries that foments innovation and opportunity.

But even if by some magic we accomplished all of those things, a city would lack a soul without artistic expression. It's the artists and those who support the creative ecosystem — be it curators, arts administrators, community programmers — who imbue Boston with spirit.

Artists and other creative professionals often provide communities with unexpected but necessary tools — ingenious language, conceptual frameworks, mediums — to tackle big quandaries. It's at the theater or a museum where you'll encounter new ways to think about old ideas, from gentrification to racial equity.

Artists also shift culture. And culture shifts public attitudes, which can shape policy.

There's a palpable energy in Boston's arts and culture scene right now. Something is brewing. A promising cohort of young artists and arts professionals is shaping the creative landscape in daring ways.

They exist in grassroots scenes and in legacy institutions alike. They're committed to rigor but untethered by tradition. Sometimes, they upend the Boston canon or disrupt it or move it forward.

They're the new Boston.

On March 28, The ARTery will be celebrating 25 millennials of color in Boston arts. These are artists and creative professionals whose work deeply resonates, who are setting new standards and whom we believe you should watch in the next year.

Using the Pew Research Center's definition of a millennial, someone between the ages of 23 and 38 this year, we asked cultural institutions to nominate individuals in their orbit. We also mined the unsung corners of the city. Some of the creatives you will have heard of, others will be a discovery.

You'll hear and read their stories during a week-long series on-air and online starting Monday, March 25. We'll bring our coverage to you in person on Thursday, March 28 with a public celebration at WBUR's new CitySpace. (Register for free tickets here.) We hope you'll join us.

There is no doubt that Boston stands at an important juncture in its history. These 25 millennials, we believe, will help shape the city's creative path forward.


The ARTery 25 takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. on March 28 at WBUR's CitySpace.

Related:

Maria Garcia Twitter Senior Editor, The ARTery
Maria Garcia is the senior editor of The ARTery, WBUR's Arts and Culture Team.

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