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As a practitioner, I try to live with these questions daily. During my CPP residency, the drugs, poverty, and violence were an aspect of the community that was normalised, and while not everyone faced these issues, everyone was affected by them. To place art in that context is complicated: what did we think it could achieve? How can a relatively short project (70 days over the course of a year) have an effect in a context where an entire community has been royally screwed over by generations of poor governance and/or lack of social concern? Is art ever a suitable replacement for a robust (well-funded) social work strategy? The reality of the situation was, however, that I was being paid a healthy sum to work with mostly unemployed people. And, at the end of the project, I would be paid despite the quality/quantity of ‘art’ I developed, even if I didn’t develop any art at all.

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