Nov 2, 2022 25 min read

Community Conversations and Racial Justice Through Art – With Nick Cave and Bob Faust

Episode Introductory Image with title and photos of guest Nick Cave and Bob Faust

Episode 35, 43 min listen

In today’s episode, I’ll be talking with Nick Cave and Bob Faust, two very well-known artists, art entrepreneurs, and social innovators based in Chicago. Nick and Bob use their art and their platform to advance racial justice and as a way to create and co-create community conversations. One of their installations, Making #AMENDS: Letters to the World Toward the Eradication of Racism, was the spark for our discussion.




Learn about Nick's career retrospective at the MCA Chicago. Nick Cave: Forothermore

Related episodes:

Design Matters with Debbie Millman, Interview with Nick Cave and Bob Faust

Inclusion in Art - with Suzanne Thomas

Building Community Equity Through Art - with Monique Davis


Bob Faust

Described as "part artist, part designer and part mediator,” Bob Faust is the principal and creative director for Faust, a Chicago-based art and design studio focused on cultural articulation. He is also the partner and design collaborator of artist Nick Cave, who together founded the dynamic, multi-use creative space called Facility. As an entity, it believes that art and design can create peace, build power, and change the world ... that by fostering an environment and community built from your dreams you will wake up daily within your destiny.

NewCity magazine honored Faust as "Best Breakthrough Design Artist" in 2017 and followed up in 2020 naming he and partner Nick Cave "Designers of the Moment." He has also been recognized as a design leader nationally and internationally by publications and institutions such as Communication Arts, NBC5 Chicago, the Society of Typographic Arts and Under Consideration. Faust also serves on the Cultural Advisory Council for the City of Chicago, as well as Chicago Dancemakers Forum Board of Directors and the School of the Art Institute’s Fashion Council.

Nick Cave

Nick Cave (b. 1959, Fulton, MO; lives and works in Chicago, IL) is an artist, educator and foremost a messenger, working between the visual and performing arts through a wide range of mediums including sculpture, installation, video, sound and performance. Cave is well known for his Soundsuits, sculptural forms based on the scale of his body, initially created in direct response to the police beating of Rodney King in 1991. Soundsuits camouflage the body, masking and creating a second skin that conceals race, gender and class, forcing the viewer to look without judgment. They serve as a visual embodiment of social justice that represent both brutality and empowerment.

Throughout his practice, Cave has created spaces of memorial through combining found historical objects with contemporary dialogues on gun violence and death, underscoring the anxiety of severe trauma brought on by catastrophic loss. The figure remains central as Cave casts his own body in bronze, an extension of the performative work so critical to his oeuvre. Cave reminds us, however, that while there may be despair, there remains space for hope and renewal. From dismembered body parts stem delicate metal flowers, affirming the potential of new growth. Cave encourages a profound and compassionate analysis of violence and its effects as the path towards an ultimate metamorphosis. While Cave’s works are rooted in our current societal moment, when progress on issues of global warming, racism and gun violence (both at the hands of citizens and law enforcement) seem maddeningly stalled, he asks how we may reposition ourselves to recognize the issues, come together on a global scale, instigate change, and ultimately, heal.



Ame Sanders  00:11

This is the State of Inclusion Podcast, where we explore topics at the intersection of equity, inclusion, and community. In each episode, we meet people who are changing their communities for the better. And we discover actions that each of us can take to improve our own communities. I’m Ame Sanders. Welcome.

In today’s episode, I’ll be talking with Bob Faust and Nick Cave, artists based in Chicago. As soon as I learned about their art, I knew I wanted to have them on the podcast. Nick and Bob are gifted artists who use their art and their platform to advance racial justice. They have created art in response to racial events happening around the country. Along the way, across many projects, they have used their art as a mirror, a reflection, and a way to stimulate and provoke. What especially interested me was that they also have a gift for using their art to co-create community conversation. You’ll hear more about that in this episode.

If you’re new to the State of Inclusion Podcast, you might not know that we are compiling our learnings from our discussions into what we call The Practice for Building a More Inclusive Community. One of the practices we’ve identified is the practice of GroundWork. Groundwork is about preparing the community soil for the changes that will be necessary to advance inclusion and equity. In this episode, you’ll hear Bob talk about how art can be a vehicle to open us and offer a way into difficult conversations. And you’ll learn about a specific project of theirs that was a response to the murder of George Floyd. It served as a reflection back to the community, but part of the genius of this project was that it did this through co-creating a community conversation about racial justice and healing that has continued to echo.

So today we’re happy to welcome Bob Faust and Nick Cave, two very well-known artists, art entrepreneurs, and social innovators that are based in Chicago. Welcome, gentlemen.

Nick Cave  02:30

Thank you.

Bob Faust  02:32

Yeah, thank you so much for having us.

Ame Sanders  02:35

I did an interview with Kristy Kumar, from Madison, Wisconsin and I learned about an installation that you guys did there, which we’ll talk about in a few minutes called AMENDS, and I was fascinated by that work. It prompted me to want to learn more about you guys and to learn more about your work. But first, I’d like to understand a little bit more about you guys. So, I know you’re partners in lots of ways, including your work, but in life. Why don’t you tell me a little bit about yourselves and tell our audience a little bit about yourselves and what brought you to art?

-About Nick and Bob

Nick Cave  03:04

Hi, this is Nick speaking. I’m an artist. I’m a messenger first, artist second, educator third. I work really between sculpture, performance, installation, video, really sort of employing the body in many ways that supports a lot of the disciplines that I worked within. I’m a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, as well represented by Jack Shainman Gallery in New York City. I’m a maker. I’m visionary. I am an artist with the civic sensibility and responsibility, very much about being the voices of those that can’t be heard and really very interested in social change using art as a means ways of getting there.

Bob Faust  04:09

I’m also several different things depending on who I’m talking to. So, I’m a designer; I’m an artist; I’m a yoga instructor. I’m also Nick’s special projects director. So, it all depends on specifically who I’m talking to and what project I’m doing as to which of those takes lead role, but they all kind of are all always used. I’m most interested in the space between art and design, where design generally has a real specific written down job to do and something to answer to. Art does that, but I think through a less direct means and a more absorptive means. So, I like to use both of those things to work toward a goal but deliver that communication or that engagement in a way that’s a bit more absorptive and less spoken to and directed toward.

-AMENDS Installation

Ame Sanders  05:13

I told you that I first learned about you guys from discovering your AMENDS installation. Can you talk a little bit about how that installation is part of the body of work that you do and how you engage with communities?

Bob Faust  05:28

That’s specifically a Facility artwork. First off, we should say that the building that we live and work in is called Facility. It’s more than a building; it’s an idea; it’s an initiative; it’s a not-for-profit. But it allows us to do lots of different things, things that are outside of his art practice, things that are outside of my design practice, things that are immediate, urgent, and community-based. So, maybe you want to start with how AMENDS came about specifically?

Nick Cave  05:56

So, with AMENDS, we were in COVID and then George Floyd happened. I was in Missouri at the time, and my mother knew that I was just on the edge. What that means is that, you know, she knew that I needed to get back to Chicago and somehow be proactive, somehow react. So, I actually said, “Mom I have to go home. I have got to say something in this moment.” You have a building that is programmed. It’s a building that functions and facilities in many different ways, but this was the moment where I understood the purpose of having this live workspace. That was through this AMENDS project. So, when I got home, Bob and his daughter had just come from a rally.

Bob Faust  07:13

One of the many uprisings that happened immediately here after George Floyd–Nick was gone, and my daughter (her name is Lulu) was like, “I really want to be part of something. How do we find these?” Because they weren’t being necessarily advertised, so we found one and just immediately made our way there.

Nick Cave  07:33

So, then I got back and they were like, “Oh, we went to this rally was great.” And I was like, “Well, if you’re going to march about it, you got to talk about it.” That sort of changed everything. I said, “We have to respond to what is going on right now. We have to use Facility as this billboard, this messaging board, to say something.” So, we thought about it. Facility on the outside, there are three storefronts, these huge windows. So, it’s really a space that allows art to be sort of accessible through this visual looking through the window. So, anybody can experience and connect with it. But I said, “We need to write letters to the world about racism.”

Bob Faust  08:40

Well hold up. You’re skipping over the fact that you said, “If you want to march about it, you have to talk about it.” That was the impetus for what AMENDS really was, because that was kind of a call to myself and to Lulu to recognize that, coming from our own privileged background, thinking that marching in a rally was any kind of contribution towards something that systemically wrong forever, is certainly not enough. So, we had to think about what that really was. That was asking more people like ourselves, to dig deep and find those ways that we’re contributing to racism without necessarily even knowing it. We think that we’re allies walking around, but at the end of the day, we’re doing the smallest amount possible, as opposed to anything that’s truly proactive. So, that’s where these letters to the world toward the eradication of racism came about. That was asking specifically people we knew directly.

Nick Cave  09:50

So, this was asking our collectors, our curators, and our civic leaders to come and write on the storefront windows about racism within their own upbringing. So, that was very interesting. We didn’t know how that would be received, but we knew that we had to do something. We are located right across the street from Schurz High School, a public high school. They have this amazing, enormous front lawn. We thought, “Well, how can we sort of extend the project using the front lawn?”

So, we went over there and talked with the principal and school leaders and partnered with them to create this piece titled Dirty Laundry. It was the extension of AMENDS where the community at large could come and write in AMENDS and then go hanging on the clothesline. Again, not really understanding the magnitude and the expansiveness of this project, but we knew that we had to think about accountability and responsibility. We all have to take risks. We all have to work beyond our means to continue to have these sorts of conversations. So, before you knew it, there was AMENDS hanging on the lawn, and then it ended up with over 1,000 individuals coming and writing.

Bob Faust  11:50

Mind you, this is all still during total lockdown of COVID. So, the way that that really worked for the most part after the initial weekend where we would like man tables and help people understand what they were doing. Right in the middle of the school’s lawn was one eight-foot-long table with a box of yellow streamers, a box of Sharpies, a jar of sanitizer (so that the pens can be wiped down afterward), and a tablecloth that describes what you were invited to do. It was up there for the course of an entire summer. And at one point, you know, we have weather, right? The table would get knocked over because of wind or a storm, and we found that the neighborhood was coming and lifting up the table, wiping it down, and refilling the pen box. So, the project became owned by the community, not by us. That’s for sure.

Ame Sanders  12:49

That is so powerful. I love the fact that when the installation was done in Madison, Wisconsin, there was a third dimension to it, which was an invitation for local artists, and poets, and other people to contribute some works as well.

Bob Faust  13:06

Yeah. That actually started here, too. So, once those ribbons came down from in front of the school and once we changed over the storefronts to the next project, we documented every one of the AMENDS. We wrote them down in a spreadsheet and shared that with a local poet to do his own spoken word project based on what he read from the community, so that we could share that outside of Chicago, especially outside of our neighborhood, which was the majority of the people who were filling these things out.

In the meantime, we were fielding several phone calls from institutions like the Madison Museum, who were interested in bringing AMENDS to different locations. So, we had already the data and the proof points about how this all could be used. So, they ran with it in their own way. They brought that into different neighborhoods, on the regular as well as use their windows like we did, as well as invited artists. But the whole idea is, at the end of the day, it’s a singular prompt that can be extrapolated however a community sees fits them and their demographic and their abilities and their capacities to make the project work. We were thrilled that it was able to go outside of our space. That’s for sure.

-Art as Part of Civic and Social Work

Nick Cave  14:27

It’s a project, like many of our projects that are really based in sort of civic and social work. We go in with an idea, but one never knows what the sort of results are, or the process is going to be. We’ve always just been open and creating that space to be available to whatever may happen. Allowing that action is really important. There are so many ways in which we can all be proactive, so many ways in which we can make contributions. So many ways we can be part of healing. That’s really the most important aspect of it–just what can we do? How can we be involved in these moments of despair? In this in these moments of anguish and trauma?

-Art as Healing and Social Echo

Ame Sanders  15:42

I’m so glad that you referenced the idea of healing and an art being part of the healing journey as well. I’ve been reading a book by John Paul Lederach and his daughter Angela Jill, and they do work in conflict zones. One of the things they talk about is this idea of community healing. They also talk about art as being a way to move through that and also this idea of what they call a social echo. I wanted to explore that a little bit with you guys and AMENDS as a good example. You have so many artworks and installations that we could use as an example, but let’s just stick with that one for the moment. First, there is an individual component.

So, the person who is interacting with your installation and with your art has their own reflection and their own healing and their own reaction. But then there’s this larger community piece that you guys described as well. Then there’s this third thing that John Paul Lederach calls a social echo, which is beyond the individual and their work in the community, that affects the world in a larger way. Maybe directly by moving the installation around, but maybe in ways we don’t even understand. Can you guys comment on how you see your work moving through the world and through this space from individual to community and beyond?

Bob Faust  17:10

I think the first thing that comes to mind for me is not everybody is going to fill out a tag. But, what I envisioned when I would go in at night is maybe a young person who was on their bike saw the installation and stopped, and they reflected and filled out a tag. What that gave them was a way to start a conversation at the dinner table later that day with mom and dad who might not have filled out a tag. I think that’s what art does. Art is new ways into a conversation. There are ways that are less direct. They’re a little safer for very varying opinions to enter a space or a subject that there might be conflict on. Just being able to get into that space allows for there to be a conversation, at least the beginning of one. Who knows where that conversation goes, or when it comes back, or gets spread again, but that sounds like the Echo to me.

Nick Cave  18:15

I think the echo becomes technology. It’s the new messaging space. The fact that AMENDS started on the storefront window with these letters to the world, and then that then exceeded into this dirty laundry piece. Then that was collected and then inviting a poet to respond and create a piece based on the amends. Then that being shared through technology and getting it out into this in the world in this more expansive way. But we have to remember that the community and those that are involved in public projects and contribute to that they are the ambassadors around one singular project. We may have this idea, but we really are counting on and relying on the community to join hands and to lead as we all are moving in a collective force.

-Community-based Co-Creation

Ame Sanders  19:30

I love the idea of the community of your point about the community being part of this and being responsible to lead. Maybe that’s a good place to talk about a little bit more about co-creation. So co-creating art with the community and what that can look like. Bob, I’m thinking about the work you and I talked about that you’re doing with the community, and how communities out there can think about co-creating work.

Bob Faust  19:58

Now, I think for co-creation, the first thing is to think about authorship being broad and not singular. The project you’re talking about right now is one that I’m doing on the west side of Chicago. I’m finding a way to de-center myself as a “lead artist” and just say I’m providing a project that we’re all going to work toward, and we’ll see what that becomes. You all are authors of this project. We talk about collaboration all the time and I think that definition is really, really broad. Sometimes it seems like collaboration is just contributing something that gets used in a something bigger. But our collaboration is really when somebody brings something to the table that changes the way that the initial idea was to be delivered. It’s when two or more ideas get mixed together and make something new, not one that sits adjacent to an augments. So, co-creation takes a lot of guts, a lot of trust, to move through some worry and some fear about what it’s going to be and know that by choosing to go through that path, it will be stronger because so many more energies have been mixed into the pot.

Ame Sanders  21:22

I love that idea of co-creation and collaboration really creating something new from the energies that people bring.

Nick Cave  21:30

Yeah. Who’s sitting at the table? None of these projects that we do would be able to happen without everyone sitting at the table to be seen, to be heard, to be accountable, and to take ownership. That’s where power and the beauty and the testimonies are in this collaborative experience that collectively we all in making change and shifting the narrative. For us as creators, we have to make space for in order for that to happen.

-How Has This Changed Them?

Ame Sanders  22:16

Let me ask you a question that I’ve wondered about. So you guys, your work impacts the world, right? Your community, individuals, who experience your art. But how has this work changed you guys?

Nick Cave  22:30

I think about like my MCA (Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago) show that just closed here, the Survey Show. It brings me closer to purpose, and understanding why I do what I do. For me to think about with this survey show, looking at almost four decades of my practice, I understood that for more decades, I have been working and trying to bring light to the subject of racism, inequality, injustice. For me to just sort of just consumed that thought, is like, wow. I have been operating with a purposeful life. To be able to reflect on that is not something that I think about in the moment. I’m not thinking about any of that. I’m just sort of thinking about trying to find ways and means to heal and to surround and to bring comfort and to help find ways of resolution. But when I look at this work, and I’m like, “Well, this is what I’ve been doing.” That’s amazing to me to know that, in spite of it being this directive thing that has been driving me forward, that I sort of have been sort of thinking more about the moment, it’s the urgency of being available to get my feet on the ground and get involved. It’s all this purposeful sort of journey in life.

Bob Faust  24:39

So, when you’re talking like that, it makes me think that we also have to make another acknowledgement that contextualizes this whole conversation a little bit. We especially are very lucky that the work gets out into the world in kind of these big ways because there’s lots and lots of people doing really amazing community-based work and projects. They don’t just originate in the art world. They originate in all kinds of worlds. But, the fact that you have four decades of art making, as well as a celebrated platform of making in that subject matter has given us institutional backing and trust to execute these projects on a more grassroots and available to community-based folks. So much of it is also the trust that others have given us because of that history. So, you’re also super generous with your platform. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be talking to you. My practice is what it is because of not only what I’ve learned but the opportunity that I’ve been given. So, I think that’s really important on top of all of this.

Nick Cave  26:00

Yeah, and I think that it’s all about possibilities. All of these projects are creating a space of possibility. I think about the artists that we work with. We never bring the whole project to a city. We bring the idea, and we hire the city to build the project, as opposed to bringing you know the troop and everybody from here and going to do it. We are not interested in that. I’m interested in who lives here and giving them this sort of space of possibility has been life-changing. You know, someone gave that to me. That allowed me to reimagine myself in the world in a third different way. Each time I was given the space of possibility, it elevated my own sort of beliefs and ideas of imagining what one wants for themselves. And so that has also been very, very important to make space.

Ame Sanders  27:14

So, there’s so much I want to dive off from that part of the discussion. But, I do want to take a minute and ask Bob more directly, how has this work affected you?

Bob Faust  27:25

Oh, my gosh. So much. If you go all the way back to just how we’re programmed in a way, I became a designer because that’s how I was told was a way to make a living being creative. I wasn’t raised in an overly artistic family. They were creative, of course, but it wasn’t like that was ever a plan. So, my whole life trajectory and where I was able to step next is because I saw a possibility presented to me through this person. That’s a big deal, and it’s still to this day. I still don’t necessarily trust that next step. I have to step a little bit into that fear zone, that little bit of unknown, and know that the last thing that we did was successful, so why can’t the next thing be successful too? There’s something about an unsure path that has a whole different energy about it but a whole lot more possibility about it, too. I don’t know that that’s relegated to like an artist. It’s just relegated to my path. I’ve always known that creativity was part of it, but I didn’t know that the unknown at the end could be a destination. I always thought you had to know the destination. So, that’s what I’m learning a lot. Each day that I try something new, I get excited by that. I learned something about that because you have to be aware of the unknown as opposed to stepping into something that has a formula or a regularity that you know what’s going to happen, and you can operate a little bit on autopilot. It’s a way of operating much more in your own presence.

-Where Next?

Ame Sanders  29:19

I love the answers that you guys both surfaced in that discussion, because I want to explore that a little bit more with some of the next steps in your work together. So, you talked about Facility and the work that you’re doing. You both have been successful professionally in your own right, independent of each other, but now you have this work that you’re doing together. Maybe there’s this idea of creating the platform, of creating space for other people, of also stepping into the unknown, something different that’s not–yes, you’re building on the platform that you already established both of you very successfully and professionally. Talk a little bit about what your next steps mean in that context and where you guys are headed and what you hope to see.

Bob Faust  30:07

I could talk a little bit about the platform and its use here at Facility. I think that’s a good thing to do. So, one of the reasons that when we moved into this space and we turned the front space into essentially gallery vitrines was something that I noticed when we were installing museum shows. When we were installing museum shows, you have a very specific number of tasks you have to get done each day in order to get the show up and open on time. So, you’ve got a whole bunch of preparators that are there working toward that same goal. These preparators all live very much inside the art world, but they weren’t necessarily brought into what is the traditional art faction where you go to school, you get your master’s, you get picked up by a gallery, you show and etc. So, what I was seeing was these preparators sneaking off to the back with him. They’re all like showing them his phone. He was really interested, show me what you do, because they all make work. They just don’t necessarily show it. So, they’re making good work. In many, many cases, they’re making good work, and he’s operating as a mentor.

Instead of just letting that relationship be left once the show goes up, once the exhibition goes up, we now have a place to offer an exhibition space to these people that aren’t necessarily on a traditional path of gallery exhibition. It provides opportunity. It provides acknowledgment that the work is good–keep going. It provides opportunity, it provides acknowledgement that the work is good, keep going. It provides stuff to put on that resume that maybe gets it into more of that traditional space, but it also is an example to the rest of the world that art doesn’t have to go down that path of just being in a gallery or in a museum. Art can affect change–in fact, way more change–when it’s on the street than when it’s in that gallery space. So, all of that happens because there’s a platform to offer. All of it happens because there’s a platform to offer. If we didn’t have that, we could still do it, but the effect might not be as weighty on all of those things that I mentioned. So that’s one of the big reasons.

Nick Cave  32:32

Yeah. We’ll continue to sort of evolve, and that space can be very scary at times. I think about this survey show that just closed at the MCA, and I think I can close this chapter. So that means, what’s next? To be open to this sort of unknown, but the willingness to be very, very wide open to possibilities and taking chances and taking risks, because it’s not over till it’s over. Correct? I’m sort of preparing for this next body of work, which is very, very new. Very different. I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I am all in with 100% fear. But, I’ve always stepped up to that and that has always been the catalyst that has sort of given me the fuel, the sort of fire, the sort of desire is, working in this in this sort of space of discovery. We’re always evolving, and we must continue to understand that that is part of evolution and life.

Bob Faust  34:03

Let me add that I don’t know anything about what that is in his head, either. That has nothing. It’s not at all collaborative. That is 100% what his work is going to be, and so I can’t wait to see it, either. No idea.

-The Unknown Comes with No Limits

Ame Sanders  34:18

Well, it seems like you guys are both driven by this attraction to the unknown, to the possibilities, to creating those conversations with others through your art and changing the world with it. Can you kind of share some wisdom or some advice that you might give to communities who are thinking about making their community more inclusive and equitable? How should they/could they consider using art to prepare that groundwork to stimulate their community to step into those conversations?

Bob Faust  34:58

That is such a big question, right? The first thing that I’m gonna say is what I just wrote down based on this conversation, because it makes me feel a little more secure. We’ve talked a lot about fear. But, what I just wrote down was that the unknown also comes with no limits. When you know, what’s next, you also see the limit. So, that risk of stepping into the unknown comes with so much more potential than you can envision that that might be some extra fuel to get started. Then the other giant lesson that I’ve learned in the last 11 years, is that it is so much better to say something, even say it wrong, so that you’re there to hear what that correction is and adjust it the next time. If you don’t say it, you’re either proliferating a misunderstanding or missing out on how you’re supposed to live in the world. So, say it and be ready for the correction. It’s totally okay. It might not come in a pretty way or a pretty package, but take the correction and learn from it. Say thank you for that correction and see if you can catch yourself the next time, not with the right words, but with the right intent.

-Living and Working in Community

Nick Cave  36:35

We all live in communities, and we all have to introduce ourselves to one another. That’s your net worth. That’s where these ideas of collaborations, these partnerships, will start to develop. That’s the whole point of us when we travel and we do these projects and we hire the community. I can’t tell you how many individuals live within blocks from each other–creative people–that didn’t even know that they did. So, get involved in your community centers; get involved in local art organizations; get yourself out into the creative public spaces, so you understand the demographics of who’s around you and ways in which you may be able to build partnerships and projects. There’s nothing that we do that is singular. I may produce work, but I have assistants. I may produce work solo, but I have to work with a gallery or some sort of means and ways of getting it into the world means communication, means meeting and connecting with others. I want people to realize that you’re not alone, that there are people that are interested in what you have to say, and ways in which you’re culturally wanting to be involved in so be very active and be seen. Then introduce yourself. “Hi, my name is…”

Ame Sanders  38:29

I love that idea of making sure that we introduce ourselves within our community and that we connect and that actually nothing that we do is singular. It is in community and in partnership with other people. Do you guys have anything else you want to add that we haven’t talked about?

Bob Faust  38:50

No, just thank you for giving us a chance to come back and revisit that project specifically, to talk a little deeper and learn from each other. You know, sometimes when you’re on a very busy active schedule, you move right on to the next thing. Those past things aren’t over. So, they’re still working, and you have to be reminded of that sometimes. So, this conversation is really lovely and welcome. I thank you for that.

-Being Quiet with Oneself

Nick Cave  39:17

We’re all on a mission. We are looking for a purposeful life. One thing that I want to say is the importance of being quiet with oneself. I would recommend sitting in silence for one hour every day. Can you imagine if we all did that? What that would do to us in terms of bringing clarity and truth?

Ame Sanders  39:50

It would be incredibly powerful to hear the world around you and to hear yourself in stillness and quiet. Focus your mind. Beautiful. Well, gentlemen, thank you so much for your discussion this afternoon. I just want to again encourage you in your work. Your work is far-reaching and as you said Bob, it lives out there in the world and continues to create social echoes. I’m grateful for that, and I know you guys are as well, so thank you so much.

Nick and Bob 40:20

Thank You.


Ame Sanders  40:24

I loved this conversation with Nick and Bob, how they talked about the authorship of the work they create as not singular but as broad. How it offers new ways to start a conversation, new ways into the conversation that may be less direct may be safer. Being cognizant and aware of who is sitting at the table around these choices that communities make. About the unknown coming with no limits.

I would like to close by referencing a quote from Viola Davis’s memoir Finding Me. In that memoir, she says, “the true potency of artistry is that it shifts humanity, and that art has the power to heal the soul.”

If you enjoyed this episode and want to learn more about Nick Cave and Bob Faust, head over to their interview on Design Matters with Debbie Millman. Debbie had really done her research and preparation for that interview. The result is a fun and engaging episode where she talks with Nick and Bob about their lives, their careers, their relationship, and their art. It was interesting to hear Nick and Bob talk about their very early engagement with art as kids and teenagers and share about how their relationship started. I think you’ll really enjoy that episode.

If you want to learn more about using art in your practice of building a more inclusive community, you might also want to listen to a couple of our previous episodes.

Earlier, we talked with Suzanne Thomas, about the work of her nonprofit organization, Inclusion in Art, to build opportunities for artists of color in Oklahoma. They are changing the professional art world across their state to be more inclusive for all artists.

We also talked with Monique Davis from the Center for Art and Public Exchange which is part of the Mississippi Museum of Art. Monique talked about their work, as an institution, and their mission to use art to build a new narrative for Mississippi. She also shared about a community co-creation initiative that they were sponsoring in smaller communities across their state.

Now, with Nick and Bob, we have had the opportunity for yet another perspective. We’ve talk with two artists at the top of their game and how they are using their talents and gifts along with their platform to advance racial healing and racial justice.

Check the show notes for links to these related episodes.

This has been State of Inclusion.  Join us again next time.  Hey, and if you enjoyed this episode, the best compliment for our work is your willingness to share these ideas with others.

Thanks so much.


Guest: Nick Cave, Bob Faust

Host: Ame Sanders

Social Media and Marketing Coordinator: Kayla Nelson

Podcast Coordinator: Emma Winiski

Sound: FAROUT Media

Ame Sanders
Founder of State of Inclusion. A seasoned leader & change-maker, she is focused on positive change within communities.
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