Community Matters. Artists, in particular, have been the most isolated, working in solitude and garnering a negligible share in the fruit of their endeavors. Here are some important reminders on why we need community and how to make the most from it.
Elizabeth Hulings provides in-depth looks into her father’s experience as an artist and an entrepreneur in her “Director’s View” column. Today, we take a look at Elizabeth’s article “Don’t Go It Alone.”
Elizabeth writes: “Like many artists, my father cherished his time alone in the studio, but he also understood the value of connecting with his peers. Every other week, he’d have lunch with a group of artists in Santa Fe. When the morning of the lunch came around, he would declare to me and my mother that he did not want to go. After returning from the lunch, he’d share stories about who said what, complain that his hamburger had been overcooked, and talk about how so-and-so drove him crazy with his/her political opinions. Usually, he’d add that he was never going back. Two weeks later, he’d repeat the whole process again.”
“You have got to LOVE artists to do this work and give them the care they deserve. These artists are knit into a family. Supporting and cheering for them, and being the dorm mom when needed, are only a part of what we do. In return, they have supported and been there for me. It’s a living breathing community. Respect the artists and their work.” – Building a Community of Artists—CHF Interviews Judith HeartSong.
Judith HeartSong is the executive director of Artists & Makers Studios, the largest art studio center complex in Montgomery County, Maryland. In this Q&A with Sofia Perez, Judith discusses the benefits of working in a cooperative gallery environment, and suggests ways that artists can connect with their peers and other art-industry experts.
A Game Plan.
“Common ground—any common ground—can be the foundation on which to collaborate in support of a shared goal, big or small. Our families are communities because we share a history, and sometimes DNA. Our friends form a community based on shared interests and experiences. Our colleagues make up a community because of shared appreciation, shared knowledge, and sometimes shared values. By acknowledging the value of community, both in business and creativity, we can take concrete steps to prioritize this value within our budgets.” Elaine Grogan Luttrell links human connections to financial priorities in How Community Connections Are Good for Business.