Creative Exchange: Artists Thriving in Greater Lansing

Get ready for the
2023 Creative Exchange!

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Mark your calendar for this year's exciting event! Join us in person on May 31, 2023, from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. at Courtyard by Marriott in Downtown Lansing (600 E Michigan Ave, Lansing, MI 48912).

Register now

We are pleased to welcome Artists Thrive who will engage us all in an interactive experience and activities that will offer insight to artists, arts organization leaders and creatives in the greater Lansing region.

This half-day event will dig deeply into our community's successes and struggles as we continue to build a cohesive and supportive creative community across disciplines and sectors.

The Artists Thrive team will seek to have honest conversations about the arts in Greater Lansing using words like silenced, struggle, survive and thrive, along with a variety of probing questions and innovative approaches to get us thinking. This day is all about changing our narrative around the arts! We hope you will join us.

If you have questions, please email

2023 Speakers

Headshot photo of Heather Pontonio

Heather Pontonio (she/her)

Heather is the senior program director at the Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation where she is responsible for national strategy and administration of the Art Program portfolio focused on professional practices for both artists and curators.  

In her 10 years at the Foundation, she has expanded the curatorial portfolio from a single program (the Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award) to a portfolio that supports dozens of curators and been instrumental in the launch of Artists Thrive, a national tool to assess and improve conditions for artists across the country.

She serves on the Appalachia Funders Network Steering Committee and is Board President of the Bethel Education Foundation. Heather has a master’s degree in Public Administration from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in Arts Administration from the State University of New York at Fredonia.

Ash Arder (she/they)

Ash is a transdisciplinary artist, organizer and educator who has spent the last decade transforming DIY, hacker and experimental approaches to problem solving into formalized programs, projects, and collaborations.

Her work and research use storytelling and speculative collaboration as frameworks to explore climate and social justice themes. Ash manipulates physical and virtual environments to explore mark making, mechanical portraiture and sound design as tools for complicating dynamics of power between humans, machines and the lands they occupy.