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Posts from ‘Economy’

Mar
31

Gilbert_Stuart_Williamstown_Portrait_of_George_Washington“Strive not with your superiors in argument, but always submit your judgment to others with modesty.” ~ George Washington

A recent article in the Jackson Hole News & Guide reported that four Art Association board members had resigned due to a lack of transparent leadership, a culture marked by economic emphasis and a muddy sense of creative direction. The fallout, now very public, occurred over a plan to relocate a portion of the Art Association’s operations to an empty Powderhorn Mall retail space. Board Chairman Dave Muskat reportedly attempted to push the move through quickly, without fully consulting board and staff. Though the books have balanced out under the current administration, it hasn’t been enough to stifle frustration.

When I read the article and Facebook comments about all this, I admit to reacting strongly. My long-standing respect and affection for the Art Association is real; so is the pain over watching it pass through such troubles. For years the Association has been reformatting its economic model and re-imagining what it wants to be to the community. All non-profits are businesses. They need to make money. But they also need to sustain a viable, dynamic mission. In a community our size, they need to generate authentic good will.

Partnering with another local arts group could make a difference. One prominent organization not only reaches out to Jackson’s community; it reaches out to tourism and a world audience. The University of Wyoming’s museum combines exciting contemporary and historically-themed exhibitions and teaching with programs that energize Laramie’s community.

The worst thing a leader can do to an organization’s image is publicly bad mouth colleagues and essentially tell everyone: “So what?” Once it’s out there, that sentiment can easily boomerang. Artists work mightily to move arts forward, and this latest development makes that effort more difficult. A value is owed to any organization’s supporters, whether those supporters offer hard financial assistance, volunteerism, positive word-of-mouth, or any other form of patronage. The Association has some new, very smart board members. I wish them all the luck in rejuvenating one of Jackson’s most important arts non-profits. With any luck recently department board members will be able to contribute their time and talents to the Association once again.

Submitted with modesty & good will ~~~ TC

528Here’s some support: The Art Association’s “JURIED METALS EXHIBITION: SOLDER, RIVET, WELD”  issued an open call for entries. Opening May 30th, 2014, the show will highlight new metalworks that utilize myriad metal fabrication techniques: casting, lampworking, metal clay, beading, metalsmithing, blacksmithing and welding.

Submission Deadline: Midnight MST, Monday April 28th, 2014 | Exhibition: May 30th – June 27th, 2014. Submission fee is $35. 

John E. Simms & "Bison Bison." Steel. 1992

John E. Simms & “Bison Bison.” Steel. 1992

“All work must be ready for installation. Work may be very small to large, but must be able to fit through a standard door. Work may be pedestal, wall hanging, or ceiling hung. Small jewelry pieces should have their own display form or case,” write the show’s organizers. This juried show will be judged by John Simms, Katherine Donan & Sam Dowd. Three wonderful choices!

Guidelines and instructions are lengthy, but you can find out everything you need to know by contacting Thomas Macker at aajhsubmissions@gmail.com, with the word “Metal Submission” in the subject field.

www.artassociation.org

Dec
12

rocket-launchA Community Supported Arts informational meeting takes place at the Snake River Brewery (Brew Pub!) on Tuesday, December 17th, 5:30 – 6:30 pm.

“Having launched the Community Supported Art program a couple of weeks ago with a call for artists, CSA Jackson Hole is hosting an informational meeting for artists to learn more about the project,” says CSA founder Alissa Davies.

Currently, says Davies, CSA Jackson Hole is looking for local artists of all disciplines to apply to the new and innovative program. Nine artists will be featured during the summer of 2014, with names being announced in January. The deadline for artists to apply is January 13, 2014.

CSA Jackson Hole is modeled on Community Supported Agriculture programs, programs that are gaining popularity everywhere, every year.

Courtesy Philadelphia Generosity

Courtesy Philadelphia Generosity

Selected artists will receive a commission to create 40 “shares,” and potential collectors may purchase a share. In return they receive crates of locally produced artwork at three “pick-up parties” next summer. Each shareholder receives one piece from each of the nine CSA artists over the course of the summer. Pick-up parties take place at various local venues and will be festive occasions— enjoy music, food, and the chance to meet that evening’s featured artists and their work. For more information, contact Alissa Davies at 307.690.4757 or csajacksonhole@gmail.com.

Sculpture by Kent Ullberg

Sculpture by Kent Ullberg

Remember Tapas Tuesdays?

Now there’s “Wild Wednesdays,” a day of the week to visit the National Museum of Wildlife Art, enjoy the museum’s fine art collection, sit down to delicious food served up by Rising Sage Café and hear a little music. Piano music, to be precise, performed by Francis Koerber. Shop the gift store, open until 7:00 pm. Doors are open 5:30 – 8:00 pm. Reservations are strongly suggested; call (307) 732-5434, and view the winter dinner schedule online at www.WildlifeArt.org

Alex Katz - Yellow Tulips

Alex Katz – Yellow Tulips

On Friday, December 13th, the Tayloe Piggott Gallery opens its new show, an exhibition of works by Alex Katz. An opening reception takes place that evening, 5-8:00 pm, and the exhibition remains up through January 31, 2014.

Associated with the Pop Artists, Katz’s work blossomed once the artist began studying at Manhattan’s Cooper Union Art School. The rest is a long, successful, high-profile history: read Katz’s full bio here. Piggott is noted for her ability to corral internationally renowned artists and draw selections of their work to Jackson Hole.

I do love this bit, pulled from Katz’s bio:

“During his years at Cooper Union, Katz had been exposed primarily to modern art and was taught to paint from drawings. Skowhegan exposed him to painting from life, which would prove pivotal in his development as a painter and remains a staple of his practices today. Katz explains that Skowhegan’s plein air painting gave him ‘a reason to devote my life to painting.’ ”  www.tayloepiggottgallery.com 

 

Nov
17

alissa-davies-pods-02Check a map laying out national densities of community supported agricultural (CSA) gardens, and you’ll see our country’s East and Central regions blanketed in green. The West coast is catching up, as is the Intermountain West. Why are CSAs so in demand? Personal choice; control over what you are eating and the satisfaction of developing a relationship with growers.

Now, Jackson artist Alissa Davies has picked up the concept of communal support and linked it to local art. Community Supported Art (CSA), in its inaugural season, is looking for local (Teton County) artists working in all mediums to apply for CSA Jackson Hole. The project’s goal, says Davies, is to monetarily support artists creating new work AND to build a strong, interwoven community of supporters of art in Teton County. CSA “strives to connect local artists with collectors and to bring more visibility to the creative landscape of our community.”

How will it work?

“Selected artists will receive a commission to create 40 “shares” for the program. Interested collectors will purchase a share and in return receive crates of locally produced artwork at three ‘pick-up parties’ during the summer of 2014,” explains Davies. “Featured works could include anything from a run of screen-prints, a series of small tea cups, photographs, tickets to upcoming intimate performances or events, letterpress editions of a poem or small, original paintings. Each shareholder will receive one piece from each of the nine CSA artists over the course of the summer. Pick-up parties take place at local businesses and organizations and will feature music, food, and the opportunity to meet that evenings’ featured artists and view their work.”

springboardarts-51_600

Davies notes that Springboard for the Arts is the original program, affecting both urban and rural economies. A few years ago Davies read about CSA in a food and wine magazine, and the idea stayed in her head. With so many Jackson area artists, Davies imagined this program would be a great fit. Jackson arts peeps Carter Cox and Carrie Richer will help with marketing, producing short videos on the artists and remind the community about the project during off seasons. Davies hopes to schedule a Q&A session later this fall so artists can find out more about the project.

Davies is also a new mom. Her son, Sam, has helped many of Davies’ creative impulses surface.

“Sam is a huge catalyst for so many ideas; I want to the best person possible as an example for him,” says Davies. “I want to be as good a person as I can; as a mother, that’s of the utmost importance.”

Local artists can and should apply immediately. During the summer of 2014, nine artists will be chosen and their names announced in January, 2014. Seasonal member shares are priced at $350. Shares go on sale February 3, 2014. You may purchase shares directly from Alissa Davies. Contact Davies by phoning 307.690.4757 or by emailing csajacksonhole@gmail.com.

Go, Alissa! Something tells me you’ve done your homework on this one! Your idea is beautifully reflective of your own delicate, delightful artwork.

impressionism-vincent-van-gogh-starry-night-paintings-art-689755  Continue Reading

Oct
31

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“A crucial part of a healthy community is having a sense of belonging to that community and experiencing a sense of control over your own life.”  ~ Toolbox.

Joseph Artero-Cameron, President of Chamorro Affairs, leads that island’s initiatives to preserve and promote its root culture, heritage and language. I met Artero-Cameron at 2013′s National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) Leadership Institute that took place earlier this month in Jackson, Wyoming. Whenever I observed Artero-Cameron he confidently offered up insights regarding strategy, arts and cultural tradition. He has a knack for getting to the heart of a matter, providing fresh perspective with a twinkle in his eyes.

Artero-Cameron was attending his first NASAA meeting, but he runs several government agencies in Guam, an unincorporated territory of the United States. Artero-Cameron oversees conservation of corals, fisheries and other ocean matters; he runs the island’s television station, is actively involved with building a new $30 million museum and a new 15,000 square foot art gallery. And those, says Artero-Cameron, are just a few of his duties.

Rendering of Guam's Chamorro Educational Facility & Museum

Rendering of Guam’s Chamorro Educational Facility & Museum

We spoke of the role of women have traditionally taken in forming Guam’s culture; Artero-Cameron had made an observation about plenary speaker Terry Tempest Williams’ mother’s legacy of dozens of blank journals.

“We’ve noticed over the years that it’s not so much what is written or spoken, but the unspoken,” said Artero-Cameron. “And we define the soul on what is NOT said. It’s a very active voice, the soul.”

Historically, women are Guam’s heart and soul.

“My mother and grandmother live with me. This meeting is a wonderful experience, and it’s often said that it’s not what people say, but what they don’t say that matters most. What they do. Coming from a matrilineal society 4,000 years old the Chammurans (Guam’s indigenous people) were basically non-verbal until the Americans came in; then, writing things down was encouraged,” recounted the President of Chamorro Affairs.

How does the unspoken manifest itself?

Guam's Joseph Artero-Cameron

Guam’s Joseph Artero-Cameron

It manifests via non-verbal cues. Artero-Cameron practiced psychotherapy for years and found that it was not so much what his patients said, but their physical cues, movements and words left unsaid that proved most revealing. Non-verbal cues divulge human behavior, why any behavior exists or doesn’t exist.

“It’s not so much what a community as a group thinks of as “normal,” says Artero-Cameron. “It’s quite okay to be neurotic, as long as you know that 2 + 2 = 4!  You may not like the answer, but nonetheless it’s real.”

And what could shelves of blank journals have to tell us? Or any blank surface? Everything has the potential to be a canvas for words or imagery. Women, said Artero-Cameron, hold the key, even though Guam’s male population is attempting to “diversify” culture by defining womens’ roles for them and “making a mess of it.”

In our culture, a matrilineal society, the women have a lot of voice, simply through their actions. Through their actions, they  keep our language, culture and families together. Our spoken language is only one or two words, and those few words create just a phrase, but they communicate volumes.

My grandmother and mother were always communicating silently when I was growing up; the unspoken. But those were the white pages—-they were the most important pages in my life. They are what a woman is truly trying to say.  A woman’s voice, her greatest asset, is her soul.”  www.dca.guam.gov

Jonathan Katz presents a Shakespeare doll to NEA Chairman Dana Gioia. Courtesy NEA.

Jonathan Katz presents a Shakespeare doll to NEA Chairman Dana Gioia. Courtesy National Endowment for the Arts.

My conversation NASAA’s Jonathan Katz extended a bit further. I was curious as to how an entire country of states’ arts representatives stay connected…how they interact out of session, throughout any given year. How do they influence each other, if at all?

“They connect in a number of ways. There are networks used quite often by the executive directors, the chair and council members, the arts education managers; we have webinars and get suggestions from the members about topics they are interested in,” responded Katz.

images“We discuss different aspects of grant making, different kinds of partnerships with the military, programming, policy issues; somebody has a great project that they want to share—-we have three states doing that—-or someone’s great advocacy success, we talk about how we can see that success replicated. In essence, we’re a year-round learning network; that’s just one thing an association does. I really am an association executive, even though my members are government agencies, and we’re in the arts. What an association does is make leadership and learning possible. The website is an important focus of communication, a lot of our resources go there. Most of our staff are researchers, so it’s really about collecting answers to the questions that our members have.”

Katz went on to explain that if there’s a success in one state, it’s a success for all because the organization learns from it. On the flip side, if a state experiences a challenge or failure, the whole field advances because something is learned from the experience NOT to do, a particular strategy doesn’t work. That conversation, Katz said, will go on all year.  www.nasaa-arts.org.

Landscape - Mixed Media on Paper by Mark Nowlin

Landscape – Mixed Media on Paper by Mark Nowlin

Speaking of “connections,” though last weekend’s closure of Master’s Studio felt surreal, the number of people turning out to help was reaffirming. What love and support! What acknowledgement! Despite the day’s circumstances I felt such closeness, community and solidarity; everyone performed a public service. The art gods willing, one day a beautiful new arts supply shop will open in Jackson, and wouldn’t it be wonderful if Master’s Studio’s master was at the helm?

Happily, we can still avail ourselves of Nowlin’s custom framing and matting services. His present East Jackson location is 85 McKean Lane. Phone: 307.733.9387.  

 

 

Oct
28

NASAA Logo.png

This year Jackson Hole, Wyoming was the setting for the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies’ (NASAA) 2013 Leadership Institute. Top level executives and leaders from all 56 state and juristictional arts agencies attended. NASAA CEO Jonathan Katz, PhD, noted that this year’s meeting focused on optimizing state arts agency public value; to that end, agency leaders must keep abreast of societal trends and sentiments.

For the second time in a week author-activist Terry Tempest Williams presented a keynote speech to arts advocates and representatives here in Jackson, and Wyoming’s Alan K. Simpson delivered a passionate talk at an evening celebration highlighting Wyoming’s arts at the National Museum of Wildlife Art. For several days Jackson received a diverse cultural injections and multiple opportunities to widen our scope of knowledge with regard to strategies and mission.

In an interview, Katz noted that despite Jackson’s geographical isolation, choosing it as this year’s meeting destination wasn’t an extravagant decision. As the organization is an arm of state government, it’s mindful of expense; per-diem costs matter. Jackson’s season had wound down, group rates were attractive and coming to such a beautiful place proved an excellent return on investment.

Jonathan Katz and Terry Tempest Williams at NASAA's Leadership Institute

Jonathan Katz and Terry Tempest Williams at NASAA’s Leadership Institute

We tend to think of Wyoming as a stand-apart state when it comes to a low percentage of people residing in urban areas; but a quick look at 2010′s government census urbanized population map reveals that a massive portion of our county has NO urbanized population. States, with a few exceptions, are primarily rural. I spoke to Katz about the theory that when urban hubs become especially creatively revitalized, rural communities can be emptied out, making it difficult for rural communities to create their own “vibrancy.”

Tammy Christel: One the topics for this year’s conference is “Rural Myths, Realities and Opportunities,” a conversation about rural America’s being shaped by “numerous social, demographic, economic and technological forces, many of which affect the success of state arts agency programs and policies.” When larger cities become especially revitalized, with a lot of great city planning going on, a lot of public art installed, all kinds of initiatives—what happens to rural communities? Are they sucked into an economic black hole?

Jonathan Katz: I directed the Kansas Art Commission for several years, and mine was a rural state. The challenges of rural life are that there are plenty of things to do to take up your time, but there’s not a lot of diversity of resources because there aren’t that many people in any one concentrated area. There aren’t that many industries in the area, so it’s fragile.

But there are offsetting values. Because when something happens in a rural community, you can get a group of people involved—and it can be a small number—who can really make a difference. It’s not uncommon to have an arts event with more people attending than live in the community. They come from other places. They’ll drive. So they think of their community as a wider space.

UA2010_UA_Pop_MapPart of the challenge of rural living is when kids go away to college and immerse themselves in a learning and cultural experience, and their expectations change. They expect that where they’re going to live will be the kind of place with the plentiful resources they’ve now become familiar with. So as they often do, they go to the theater, opera, the symphony, they see foreign movies with independent presses and they get involved themselves in these creative activities, and they want to live in a place and have a career, raise a family and be in business with these amenities.

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