The non profit Day Eight was founded by artist and arts-writer Robert Bettmann. Bettmann. Bettmann serves as Artistic Director of live productions, and managing editor of the arts magazine Bourgeon, online at http://www.Bourgeononline.com. In the last year the organization has completed several major projects within its two major programs.
In 2014 the magazine completed the fourth annual DC Student Arts Journalism Challenge, a competition created to identify and support talented young arts writers. The organization received a grant from the Humanities Council of Washington DC to support expansion of the competition with Philip Kennicott (Washington Post Culture Critic, 2013 Pulitzer Prize winner for criticism) who has been a judge of the competition in past years.
In 2014 Day Eight executed a partnership with the DC Environmental Network. Activities included a community building film screening and a day-long retreat. To develop a common language around the art and science that might be involved in enviro arts collaborations, project partners and interested parties gathered together for an initial retreat, hosted by Casey Trees at their farm/retreat center in Virginia June 21, 2014. Part teach-in and part brainstorming session, the retreat offered opportunity for experts to share information relevant to co-evaluation of future project activities. Attendees included: Mark Buscaino (Casey Trees, ED), Chris Weiss (DCEN, ED), Robert Bettmann (Day Eight, AD/ED), Anne Becker (Poet), Kelly King (Contradiction Dance, AD/ED), Trey Sherard (Outreach Director, Anacostia Riverkeeper), Kelsey Kerle-O’Brien (United Healthy Anacostia/Federal City Council), Amanda Barrett, Robert Hanson (Montgomery County Arts and Humanities Council, grants program officer), David Ramos (artist and Corcoran design Prof, co-founder/organizer of Knowledge Commons DC), Jack Hannula (visual artist, past president Arts Club of Washington).
In 2014 Robert Bettmann and Day Eight were granted funding for a partnership with the Washington Project for the Arts. Washington Project for the Arts (WPA) serves as a catalyst for contemporary art, supporting artists at all stages of their careers and promoting contemporary art with exhibitions that stimulate public dialogue on art and culture. Through the funding Bettmann will curate a show and work with WPA artists on a related publication, “Hothouse: imPRINT”.
The company added five new Board members in 2014, including Lindsay D’Ambrosio (National Science Foundation), Ben Hammer (Glover Park Group), Amanda Barrett (PR professional) and Rachel Cohen (Union of Concerned Scientists.) The company also completed a successful crowd-funding campaign, engaging thirty first-time donors.
Through his participation in the ecstatic dance community Bettmann was invited to ‘docent’ one of the bi-weekly Five Rhythms classes in Bethesda, MD. Four members of the ecstatic dance community joined Bettmann in a series of rehearsals to begin explorations toward creation of participatory performances reflecting on the relationship to the natural world.