Neal Medlyn: Hey everybody. It’s me, Neal Medlyn. I’m here with Jessica Almasy from The TEAM at the Grey Dog and we’re going to talk to you about America for Creative Capital.
Jessica Almasy: Helloooo!
Neal: I was just thinking that we would get together because Jessica’s work is somewhat about America and I think that my work is about America, too. I don’t get asked about that very much. So, I wanted to talk about what it’s like to make work about America and have various experiences of people responding or not responding to it. I just wanted to have a wide-ranging and thought-provoking conversation about making work about America. [Laughs]
Jessica: Awesome. I’d like to start by giving a little context for where The Team is coming from. I’m part of the collaborative theater ensemble The Team, and we created a mission statement about ten years ago, which states that we make plays about America. So, if we’re succeeding, then that’s what we’re doing. Also, we had to create an acronym for legal purposes back in the day when we incorporated, so Team stands for Theater of the Emerging American Moment; so again, it’s right in the title. Our job is to think about what is happening right now. We gained our first traction in the UK at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, so people really read our work as information from America being made by young Americans. We were like a specimen for them. I think there’s a really big difference when you’re out of context than when you’re ensconced in your own culture. Continue reading →
DD Dorvillier and Jennifer Monson in “RMW(a) & RMW,” 2010. Photo by Val Oliveiro.
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, choreographers and long-time artistic collaborators DD Dorvillier (2013 Performing Arts) and Jennifer Monson (2000 Performing Arts) sat down to discuss Jennifer’s recent performance project, Live Dancing Archive, which she presented at The Kitchen in February 2013. The following is an excerpt from their conversation.
DD Dorvillier: To start, I thought I would take on something you wrote to me: “I am interested in the possibility of the body as an archive on multiple scales at once both temporal and spatial, human and adjacent to human—the particularities of experience as something that is impermanent and leaves multiple kinds of traces, and the relationships of transmission and reception in the sound scores, in the dancing and the audience.” This idea of the possibility of the body as an archive on multiple scales—do you think of this as a metaphor, or is it an actual practice, or is it something in between? In other words, what does the body as an archive LOOK like or FEEL like? Continue reading →
Concept rendering of SuttonBeresCuller’s “Mini Mart City Park”
John Sutton: So, a little bit of background to start: I’m a 2008 Visual Arts grantee—one third of the group SuttonBeresCuller—and I’ve returned to the Creative Capital Artist Retreat for the last couple of years as an artist advisor and consultant. At this year’s Retreat, [Creative Capital staff] Lisa Dent and Jenny Gill introduced us and said that we had to chat because our projects have a lot of parallels and they thought that we could learn from each other.
Juan William Chávez: Great to talk to you! I guess we can start by just describing our projects.
Sutton: Okay. SuttonBeresCuller does a lot of different kinds of work, but our Creative Capital project, Mini Mart City Park, is an ongoing project intent on the creative reuse, revitalization and remediation of former small-site gas stations. Right now, we’re focused on a site in Seattle’s Georgetown neighborhood. Like many of these former gas station sites, it’s heavily contaminated, and ultimately we want to clean it up and turn it in to a pocket park, community center and public sculpture, and gift it to the city, for the site to become part of the parks department. Everybody’s really interested but nobody wants to take on the environmental issues. Continue reading →
Lisa Bielawa will stage a musical performance at Berlin’s Tempelhof Field May 10-12.
Artists Lisa Bielawa (2006 Performing Arts) and Arturo Vidich (2013 Performing Arts) have more in common than meets the eye. Though they work in different media—Bielawa is a musician and composer, Vidich is a choreographer—both Creative Capital grantees are taking on community-building and place-making in an unusual space: the repurposed military airfield.
Bielawa’s Airfield Broadcasts project has two iterations, one at the Tempelhof Field in Berlin (premiering this weekend, May 10-12) and the other at Crissy Field in her native San Francisco (October 26-27). Each performance involves between 100 and 1,000 musicians, from student groups to professional orchestras, performing Bielawa’s hour-long composition in these massive public spaces for audiences both intentional and accidental. Bielawa incorporates musical composition and choreography to fully explore the sonic and spatial relations of each former airfield. Continue reading →
The Arts & Business Council in Nashville hosted its second Professional Development Program Core Weekend workshop for local artists in late September. The workshop has been described as a ”crash course in self-management, strategic planning, fundraising and promotion.” The ABC staff asked the participating artists what they learned, and compiled this amazing video of their feedback (click Play above to watch). We’re thrilled to hear that the artists walked away with so many practical tools!
Brad Stephenson presenting at a recent Internet for Artists workshop at the Montana Arts Council in Kallispel, MT
Brad Stephenson is our Professional Development Program’s newest Internet for Artists Workshop Leader. We think Brad has made a great addition to our team and, having just completed an amazing weekend workshop with the Montana Arts Council in Kallispel, MT, we asked fellow PDP Workshop Leader Matthew Deleget to help us introduce Brad to the broader Creative Capital community.
Matthew Deleget: Tell us a bit about your background and how you got involved in the arts.
Brad Stephenson: I was an introvert during my middle and early high school days, and a fantastic teacher convinced me to join show choir. Singing quickly became a passion, which led to musical theater, which led to straight plays, which led me to pursue a bachelor’s degree in acting from the University of Kentucky. After spending time as a standup comedian in New York (yes, standup is an art form), I moved to Pittsburgh and completed the Master of Arts Management program at Carnegie Mellon University. My day job is digital marketing at CMU, but I continue to work on various artistic projects. I am also a grant award finalist for a film project called Reel Pittsburgh, a community-based video project focusing on the people of the greatest city in the world. Continue reading →
As you likely know by now, Creative Capital’s Professional Development Program (PDP) just launched its new Online Learning Programfor artists working in all disciplines nationwide. Drawing on PDP’s “artist to artist” learning model, the new program includes seven 90-minute live webinars addressing the following pressing issues facing artists:
* Applying for Grants and Residencies: Strategies for Writers, with Ethan Nosowsky
* Business Management, with Jeffrey Gibson
* Creating a Marketing Strategy, with Dread Scott
* Social Media: How to Be Everywhere All the Time, with Eve Mosher
* Real Life Budgeting, with Andrew Simonet
* Web Site, Blog & Email Essentials, with Steve Lambert
* Visual Arts Round Table, with Matthew Deleget
We offer two webinars per month on a rotating basis and hope to reach artists working in every corner of the country, especially in locations where we haven’t had the resources yet to travel. Anyone with access to a computer and the Internet can attend. To date, we’ve had artists participate from more than 39 states–we couldn’t be more excited about it. Continue reading →
Jason Salavon, Karolina Sobecka, Stephen Vitiello, Marina Zurkow
Over the years, we’ve found that a number of the artists we support in our Emerging Fields category have questions about how they can better market and exhibit their work. They have questions about pricing and editioning; changing formats; what it is that they are actually selling when they offer a work for sale; what their obligations to representatives and collectors are after a sale; and whether or not they should even participate in an art market that is, in their eyes, more sympathetic and better able to represent works in more conventional or established media.
On November 2, Creative Capital hosted a webinar for grantees to explore some of these issues and answer specific questions from artists working in new media. The panelists were Jason Salavon (2000 Visual Arts), Karolina Sobecka (2009 Emerging Fields), Stephen Vitiello (2006 Emerging Fields) and Marina Zurkow (2001 Visual Arts). Sean Elwood, Creative Capital’s Director of Programs & Initiatives, served as the facilitator.
Earlier this year, Jennifer Fox (2005 Film/Video grantee) raised over $150,000 on Kickstarter for her new film My Reincarnation, making hers one of the most successful film campaigns in Kickstarter’s history. Even more impressive is the fact that Jennifer achieved this level of success on her first foray into the world of online fundraising. She learned a lot through the process of this crash-course and offers her Top 10 Crowdfunding Tips:
1. Reach Out to Family and Friends
Unlike what many will tell you, I must say that for me family (and friends) are more about getting emotional support than money. It is very dicey to ask people you know and love to give you their hard earned funds. I had some friends tell me that they felt offended that I was emailing them about our campaign. Discussing this with them led to some very interesting insights about why I feel this is a democratic and legitimate way to support the arts. But I am not here to proselytize. I immediately backed off. In a way what they are saying is true: they don’t ask me to fund their passion, why should I ask them to fund mine? However, that’s not exactly how I see it: I believe that the film project, My Reincarnation, has a greater good for humanity and is a contribution to people’s lives. Hence, it must be seen and is worth funding.