ArtsNow announced today that Dara Harper will join the team as its first Director of Programming, a new full-time position within the organization designed to support ArtsNow’s future growth and advance the strategic implementation of the community-wide Cultural Plan. This position was made possible through a multi-year investment of Knight Foundation.
Harper—a creative entrepreneur, community organizer, and Akron artist—is also the creator and co-founder of the Akron Black Artist Guild and owner of Art Only Boutique, which produces original paintings in acrylics ranging from figurative to abstract compositions. An Akron native, she graduated from The University of Akron with a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction and a bachelor’s degree in art studio, with an emphasis on painting, and a minor in art history.
Currently, Harper is creating a mural for the Boston Mills Conservancy titled “Finding Our Way Home,” which is part of a larger collaboration with the Conservancy designed to develop and implement solutions focused on inclusion and accessibility designed to continue the tradition of free public performances that are open to all.
“Engaging the community and spaces through art is part of my purpose,” shares Harper. “I’m looking forward to being a part of the ArtsNow team as we support and advance Summit County’s creative community together.”
“We are thrilled to welcome Dara Harper to ArtsNow,” shares Nicole Mullet, executive director of ArtsNow. “This is a critical time for our organization and the advancement of the community priorities outlined in the Cultural Plan, and Dara is the action-oriented and passionate leader who can propel our work forward.”