"Amplifying the Voices of Artists and Cultural Workers for Sustainable Development"

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Eduardo Kobra's Mural at the United Nations for the 77th General Assembly. Photo Credit: Eduardo Kobra

About the Arts & Culture Working Group

Who Are We?

The Arts & Culture Working Group is an autonomous, self-coordinated, and dynamic stakeholder assembly dedicated to championing sustainable development through the transformative power of arts and culture. Rooted in the belief that creativity is an essential catalyst for progress, we serve as a vital conduit between the realms of artistic expression and the complex tapestry of global health and development initiatives.

What Do We Do?

At the global level, we foster artist representation, artistic collaborations, and cultural diplomacy to foster a shared global consciousness. Regionally and nationally, we engage with communities, artists, and cultural practitioners to harness the creative spirit for local development, social cohesion, and empowerment. We are tireless advocates for the arts and culture practitioners as legitimate stakeholders for sustainable development, recognizing their ability to transcend language, transcend borders, and inspire change.

Our Priorities

Our top priority at the Arts & Culture Working Group is to integrate artists' and cultural workers' voices - particularly those from the informal sector - into sustainable development. We strive to highlight the powerful role of arts and culture in fostering equity, resilience, and prosperity on a global scale. Our mission is to promote artist representation and infuse the essence of cultural diversity and artistic expression into the core of sustainable development, recognizing the potential for transformative change through creativity.

Amplifying Creative Voices

We will provide a platform for diverse artists, cultural practitioners, and creative thinkers to raise their voices on critical sustainability issues, fostering innovative solutions and generating new perspectives through the arts.

Cultural Integration in Policy

We will actively advocate for the inclusion of arts and cultural voices within the framework of sustainable development policies at all levels, particularly the HLPF through the MGoS-CM (Major Groups and Other Stakeholders Coordinating Mechanism.)

Global Cultural Exchange

We will facilitate cross-cultural exchanges, promoting dialogue, understanding, and collaboration among diverse communities worldwide, harnessing the universal language of the arts to bridge divides and forge a more harmonious, sustainable world.

Join Our "Arts for the Future" Festival

The Arts & Culture Working Group is hosting our inaugural "Arts for the Future" Festival, a hybrid showcase of art, creative workshops and panel discussions in and around the United Nations on the role of arts and cultural expressions for the UN Summit of the Future and beyond!

We are currently seeking partners to self organize events and help amplify the festival taking place 13-23 September 2024.

How can we create a just, inclusive, and sustainable environment for creative practitioners to join the climate action movement? Check out our inaugural report launched during COP28 in Dubai.

How can we create a just, inclusive, and sustainable environment for creative practitioners to join the climate action movement? Check out our inaugural report launched during COP28 in Dubai.

Meet Our Representatives

Our Global Co-Chairs and Regional Representatives are Creative Practitioners with a Passion for Promoting Arts and Cultural Expressions for Sustainable Development

Global Co-Chairs

Global Co-Chair



Lisa Russell is an Emmy-winning Filmmaker, UN/NGO arts curator and Founder of Create2030

Global Co-Chair



Derrick Odidi is an Arts Curator and Founder/CEO of Art Affair for Development Goals.

Global Youth Co-Chair



Abby Kiran is a poet and Founder of Project Gita.

Regional Representatives




Lisa Kibutu is a fashion designer.




Zheng Guan is a visual artist and advocate.




Diego Garrido is a TV and film director/producer.

Latin Am & Caribbean



Bianca Rego is an actress.

Middle East & N. Africa


Ouafa Belgacem is a strategist and financing expert and is the Founder of Culture Funding Watch, CCIBoost, RMDigithon & Artnstay.

North America



Mendani Bhandari is a professor and author.




Jill Oakley is the Director of Coexistence

"Art is one of the most powerful ways we can express our humanity and forge bonds with one another. By bringing us together, a work of art can make us more tolerant of our differences."

United Nations Secretary-General

António Guterres

Want to Join Us as a Partnering Artist or Organization?

Connect With Us

ACWG Organizing Partners

Create2030 (USA)

Website: create2030.org

Email: hello@create2030.org

Art Affair for Development Goals (Kenya)

Website: www.artaffairdevelopment.org

Email: info@artaffairdevelopment.org