Introducing our Summer Intern, Meera Chakravarthy

We’re excited to welcome Meera Chakravarthy to our team as our new Summer Intern.

Meera is one of our four new team members joining EmcArts this year. Read more about our team on our website.


Meeraphoto

Meera is a rising senior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she is studying Economics and Music. Coming from a background in flute, Meera hopes to synthesize her artistic lens with her inclination to understand the systems artists navigate, and the environments in which they reside. Currently, she is preparing for a thesis focused on cultural nonprofits’ role in planning and developing the arts in a city. Her research at EmcArts this summer is extremely valuable, since it supports her in mapping innovative work in the field and understanding connections within the cultural sector. She assists the team in a variety of ways, with particular focus on supporting business development and grant writing. Meera researches foundation structures and innovation networks within cities while assisting with information gathering, writing, and proofreading for reports and grants.

“As a native of Kansas, living in New York City and working with EmcArts has been an eye-opening and rewarding experience for me, especially as I think about the next directions I’d like to take in my research and my professional life,” says Meera.  Meera enjoys exploring various yoga practices and eating her favorite cuisine: Ethiopian food.

Who and what inspires you to work towards innovation and adaptive change in the arts?

Coming from two academic backgrounds, music and economics, I have always felt the drive to be innovative and adaptive to ensure that these disciplines blend. My liberal arts background has constantly inspired me to not treat my interests as binary, but instead find ways to creatively mix these perspectives. I am inspired to innovate by listening to fusion artists. Growing up in a system of classical western music education yet coming from a South Indian background, I have constantly debated what role music plays in my life. Through exposure to fusion artists, I finally found out how musicians can be adaptive towards two cultures and create a blend of music that creates a more special avenue for me to explore my own artistic practice.

What do you wish you could see more of in the arts and social sectors?

I wish the arts and social sectors could affect wider groups of people — not only in their exposure to products — but in their capacity for outreach and engagement. I hope to see this happening specifically through innovative and inclusive urban planning strategies. Ideally, I strive to see more people involved in interdisciplinary conversations —in both urban planning and governance — about the role of art as a catalyst in cities and communities.

About
Melissa Dibble, EmcArts Managing DirectorMelissa Dibble is the Managing Director and Lead Facilitator at EmcArts, bringing over two decades of experience in cultural administration and development of new strategies in organizational innovation within the arts sector.

  • Bernard Glassman

    This may be one of the best and most cogent discussions of local-knowledge planning I’ve ever read–and from a rising senior, no less. It’s the sort of thinking one finds in the best explanations of the social innovation labs approach to planning, and it demands not just a sensitivity to, but a mastery of, synthesis. It also puts me very much in mind of Dierdre McCloskey’s work, particularly her “Rhetoric of Economics.” This comment is beginning to sound more academic than it should, since what Meera envisions is so intensely practical. Synthesizing the academic and the practical. Now that’s fusion art if ever there were such. Congratulations to both Meera and your organization on a fine collaboration.