*Community Arts is an art process that involves professional artists and community members in a collaborative creative process resulting in collective experience and public expression.
It provides a way for communities to express themselves; enables artists, through financial or other supports, to engage in creative activity with communities; and is collaborative — the creative process is equally important as the artistic outcome.
Regardless of the ultimate purpose(s) to which social capital is to be put, community arts programs are said to build social capital by boosting individuals' ability and motivation to be civically engaged, as well as building organizational capacity for effective action. This is specifically accomplished by:
- Creating a venue that draws people together who would otherwise not be engaged in constructive social activity.
- Fostering trust between participants and thereby increasing their generalized trust of others.
- Providing an experience of collective efficacy and civic engagement, which spurs participants to further collective action.
- Arts events may be a source of pride for residents (participants and nonparticipants alike) in their community, increasing their sense of connection to that community.