filming the Future|Money short film at the 2023 Interledger Summit [Image Description: A man uses a camera to film two individuals speaking at a table about art and culture in the lobby of a hotel. They sit next to a window with lush green trees.]
Working with the Programs team, I provided support for the Future|Money Artist Cohort, from participating in the selection of artists to facilitating the monthly convenings to supporting on the ground for the 2023 Summit Open Studio exhibition. I also co-hosted the Future|Money Podcast, participated in many rounds of grantee applications, broadcast my participation to my intersecting community of artists and community organizers, and created a short film to document the work and perspectives of the Future|Money cohort.
I'm very proud and grateful to have worked so closely with Interledger's Programs Team to bring together the Future|Money Artist Cohort and support the exhibition of their work. As someone from a non-technical background who was admittedly a bit intimidated by the technology of open payment protocols and nodes, working alongside Lawil, Ayesha and Kokayi provided an inspired philosophical entry into the importance of and possibilities within financial inclusion and how it can be communicated to and built upon by those who are not technologists. Creative visioning beyond incrementalism and iteration is essential in these times of urgent social inequality and pulsing need. Being in dialogue with the artists as they developed both their work and their relationships and rapport with each other was powerful - the cohort was truly international and multi-disciplinary, and so many already had experience advocating for open internet and equitable tech policies within their home countries, with bold critical analysis on where the promise of democracy and equality fall short within our contemporary economic and political landscape. I saw my role as both fostering relationship building and discourse as well as facilitating the collective narrative of the cohort, which included deep learning and inquiry about the artists' backgrounds, artistic practice, and philosophies. I am very proud of the short film that I created with my colleague Spencer Byam-Taylor that weaves the work and stories of each artist together into a greater whole, and demonstrates how powerful it is to have creative minds and artists at the heart of technological development towards financial inclusion.
The outputs of my Ambassadorship certainly evolved based on emergent needs of the Programs Team and the Future|Money program. When I first applied to the Ambassadorship, the Future|Money program had not been fully developed, and since there was a delay in my onboarding, by the time I began my Ambassadorship the grant program was in full swing. While I didn't anticipate utilizing my background in grant making in this Ambassadorship, I was grateful to have the opportunity to participate in grantee application review and therefore learn so much more about the broader Interledger community and practitioners in the intersecting worlds of open internet advocacy, equitable finance and tech development. Co-hosting the Future|Money podcast with Lawil was another opportunity that emerged that I was happy to leverage my experience in hosting towards. I'm excited to share the full suite of episodes as well as the short film soon.
I was grateful to be invited to be a panelist on the ILP Summit Recap in December 2023, and am looking forward to sharing out the episodes of Future|Money Podcasts and the short film upon completion.
My next steps are rounding out the interviews with the Future|Money artist cohort as well as finalizing the short film to be presented on the Interledger website!
I'm so appreciative to be within the larger Interledger Foundation community and will reach out when I have calls to action to support my work as an artist, organizer and writer.
Just want to give a big shout out of gratitude to Chris and Kokayi for believing in me and providing the opportunity to serve as a Community Ambassador, and to Lawil and Ayesha for being fantastic collaborators throughout my tenure as an Ambassador. Finally, much love to all of the Future|Money artists; my mind was truly blown and my creative cup of inspiration runneth over after having the opportunity to be in community and conversation with you all. I leave this Ambassadorship further certain of the central place that artists and cultural workers must have within emerging economies and technology for true equity and change making.