LIFE is LIVING establishes a new model for partnerships between diverse and under-resourced communities, green action agencies, and the contemporary arts world.

Since 2008, Life is Living has grown from a festival that uses art to foster environmental justice to a mobilized campaign much larger in scope. Currently run by Hodari Davis of edutainment for equity, Life is Living has served as an incubator for a multigenerational community of artists including Brett Cook, Theaster Gates, Estria Miyashiro, and a host of others.

Each year the festival brings together over 7,000 people to West Oakland’s historic Little Bobby Hutton Park. The festival has included a traveling environmental caucus & concert, an invitational Graffiti Battle, live-action sports, sustainable materials construction projects, live poetry events, free breakfast program, a science and technology fair, multiple stages, and a variety of other activities. As we reflect on the voices of an emerging cultural majority, we recognize that our arts practices must echo and sustain the lives of the communities we engage.

Under the direction of former National Program Director Hodari Davis, Life Is Living has been an important experiment. It has tested new ideas about engaging youth, presenting public art, fostering literacy and storytelling, developing arts audiences, establishing non-traditional partnerships, transforming the environmental justice movement, and catalyzing community-building.

Authored by Jeff Chang, Living Theory of Change explains the artistic process, philosophical frameworks & organizing principles that have guided Life Is Living’s approach to eco-empowerment through the Arts. With a historical look at the events, the partnerships and audiences that stemmed from this process, the document will articulate a new theory of change; one grounded in celebrating Life through urban performance, intergenerational health, and environmental action.

The living document will also establish explicitly the value that grows in the intersection between cultural and environmental philanthropy.


Edutainment for Equity is a consulting and production company that specializes in Equity & Inclusion, Strategic Planning & Futures Thinking and Youth Development & Education. We use art, multiple learning modalities and self-reflection coupled with field tested and research validated strategies, to improve performance and cultivate professional and personal growth. Our seasoned & dynamic facilitators cultivate a nurturing yet brave learning environment that expands beyond professional development. Not only will we develop your team’s skills, we will also deepen their investment in the work and ground them in purpose.