Creative Sector Series

Creative Sector Series Flyer

Since 2010, the Asheville Area Arts Council, in partnership with the City of Asheville, has convened the Creative Sector Summit– the region’s only creative industry-specific annual conference. In 2020, the arts council is expanding on this model by adding a sector Survey, a monthly Talks series at the Center for Craft, and a kick-off Dinner in the Foundry Hotel’s Savoy Ballroom. These events are focused on three themes including Creative Placemaking, Equity and Inclusion, and Arts Education. The goal is to drive community discussion and action in these areas throughout the year.


Creative Placemaking

Creative Placemaking is an integrative approach to urban planning that drives economic development and innovation while also focusing on the wellbeing of the people that live, work, and play within the community. At this year’s summit we look at the role of public art and how to be a smART community. 

Equity and Inclusion

The arts are a pathway to equity, that is why equity and inclusion are woven throughout this year’s Creative Sector Series. Sessions on Creative Placemaking will focus on elevating underrepresented communities and what it means to truly be inclusive. Discussions around Arts Education will center around promoting arts access for all students. 

Arts Education

Arts access is proven to increase test scores, improve attendance, increase graduation rates, and reduce crimes, yet, access to arts programs decreases a students reach middle and high school. Learn about programs championing comprehensive arts education for all, and how you can advocate for arts access for every student throughout their primary and secondary education.

For arts professionals, this year’s summit will also include sessions on continuing education and training opportunities for you and your business. 


The Asheville Area Arts Council is conducting our first annual Creative Sector Survey to inform the arts council’s advocacy efforts and ensure our services match sector needs. To better ensure the accuracy of our results, arts organizations/ businesses will be contacted directly with a link to complete the survey. This survey will be open until March 31st, and the results will be presented at the Creative Sector Dinner on April 30th.


This monthly series of talks, leading up to the Creative Sector Summit, is meant to inspire discussion around each of this year’s themes: Creative Placemaking, Equity & Inclusion, and Arts Education.

This series is sponsored by the Center for Craft.

Dinner & Summit

POSTPONED: Creative Sector Dinner

POSTPONED: Creative Sector Dinner

The summit will then begin with our first-ever Creative Sector dinner on April 30th where we will present the results of our arts sector survey and hear from the city, county, and state leaders about current and upcoming arts initiatives.

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POSTPONED: Creative Sector Summit

POSTPONED: Creative Sector Summit

The two-day conference will start on May 1st at Wortham Center for the Performing Arts. Each day will begin with a morning plenary session for all attendees followed by afternoon panel discussions, workshops, and offsite breakout sessions.

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Series Sponsors

This series is made possible by: