Socially engaged processes for systemic change

Immersive installation at Royal Albert Hall, designed by artist Fié Neo, that invites the audience to sit and discuss current socio-political issues. This was back in 2017, in between International Women's March and March Against Racism.

The systemic change that we need on so many levels of social and economic structures require a connection back to basic. Connecting with our feelings and emotions, sensing and feeling the world, learning to listen and learning in processes.

We live in a very data driven world that unfortunately doesn’t have much space for right brain thinking (the intuitive and imaginative dreamers). If we look at indigenous cultures, there’s always a storyteller, a healer, someone who connects the community and hold space to listen and for stories to be told. In change making work, that’s so integral and key to personal transformation. This doesn’t just apply to underprivileged communities, but to everyone who has the potential to connect with a higher purpose and activate themselves towards social transformation.

My artistic process is very in tune and responsive to social and global events. The question I always ask is "What can I do? How can I play my part?"

What happens if every organisation makes that a part of their process and allow social events to feed back into the work they do? What happens if we change the way we work with one another beyond just working towards our individual or team's KPIs? What happens if these processes of collective emotional processing are facilitated not just in “social projects” for “underprivileged communities”? I don’t think the need for healing excludes people who identify themselves as privileged.

“Art is the language that everybody understands, no matter where they come from. You have to allow for the development of this new lingua franca.”


Here’s an article by Social Innovation Exchange on the impact of the arts on their work; I recently did an artist residency with them and this article reflects the impact of the artistic process on social innovation.

Fié Neo is an interdisciplinary artist and intersectional thinker. Instagram @feeyeh_neo | Podcast: OnionsTalk

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