New: DC Artists Collaborative Group

Photo by PoPville flickr user District Shots

“Dear PoP,

I am starting a new group for all types of artists to collaborate with each other for diverse new projects in DC. I announced the effort via craigslist yesterday, and have already received emails from 15 interested artists. I need some help from community bloggers to communicate to a wider audience.”

Full details after the jump.

Some Background:
I’m a mid-20s female professional from San Diego, CA and I’ve been in DC for about 5 years. I am a lifelong artist, dancer, nerd, nice girl, policy wonk, California punk kid, and community organizer.
I want to start a new collaborative group of artists in DC. DC is renewing its artist grants and public projects, pumping millions of dollars into the city for the purpose of showcasing DC as a center of American culture. Artists are coming to DC because they are inspired by political and demographic shifts in the city. There are a couple of notable attempts at such a group, most of them funded by the DC government, leaving those without a grant or connections outside of the loop.
The artist community needs a place outside of clubs and government agency hearings to network. I’ve noticed that in DC, most public art projects are chosen based off of money or connections — and I think this city deserves more than that. This city is full of culture, history, and inspiring people, and it’s time for DC to produce a community of artists that is as complex as the city we live in.

About the Group:
The group will provide resources via a blog where the group members will collaboratively post news and information. We will meet (starting just once a month in person) to discuss art and upcoming events. I fully expect the group to, within 6 months, garner the attention of the Washington Post by being the best resource for artists in DC.
Membership will consist of a mix of artistry: music, art, crafts, dance, and sculpture. (The group will bridge the gap between mediums, a place where a DJ can find a muralist, a watercolor painter can find a sculptor, a carpenter can find a dancer, etc.)

Membership Standards:
No marketing yourself like crazy, no hot-mess people, no awkward conversations about politics. This is a group for people who have something to bring to the table. We will be organized, we will be smart, we will be respectful, and we will make history.

The Process:
I’ll be collecting interested members over the course of the next month. Send me your interest and a little information about your art… and any questions you have about me.

PS – I am also in the process of getting institutional members — i.e., galleries, dance groups, etc. If you are involved in a group who has already began a collaborative project, please contact me for more information about how I can help your work.

8 Comment

  • Speaking as a working artist in DC, I would scale back your ambitions considerably and rethink your objectives. For artists who want to be connected there are already forums like ArtDC , Pink Line, not to mention Facebook . Sentences like “I fully expect the group to, within 6 months, garner the attention of the Washington Post by being the best resource for artists in DC.” and “We will be organized, we will be smart, we will be respectful, and we will make history.” are really, I’m sorry, stupid .

    • Looks like Anonymous won’t be allowed in the group, already shown to be disrespectful. And a prick I might add. Way to suffocate someone’s dreams dick.

    • You know what is comical? People who post derogatory comments but won’t post their name with it. Put your name on it so I can take a look at some of your art.

  • dc has a very diverse art scene that can handle as many attempts at collaborative groups that people can create. i think its great someone is putting their heart into it. best of luck!

  • Good sense is better than the NON sense boys… so sad.

  • It’s great to start collaborative groups, but the hyperbole needs to be cut down by several notches. The founder of this would do well to follow her own standard, “no marketing yourself like crazy.”

  • I think it sounds great. Definitely a good idea to touch base with people who are already talking to each other, i.e., the above groups mentioned. Just to save yourself time and grief and to make connections. Good luck!

  • Everyone,

    Thanks to PoP for posting my humble request, and thanks to everyone for your thoughtful and humorous comments.

    I’m glad to know that the project has gained some initial interest from people who want just what I am looking for in DC: a place to collaborate with new, different artists. I am looking forward to incorporating the existing artist groups in DC in an effort to support their work.

    I love aggregating information, as I am a nerd, so the Collaborative will serve first as an aggregation tool for already-existing groups, as well as bringing its own unique spin to the table.

    The point of a making “new” group (as opposed to working within what exists now) is to get away from the ad-based social networking sites (Facebook is nice, but it wont be around forever) and create the foundation for a free-flowing marketplace of ideas separated from grants, connections, the internet, or even artistic background.

    The project’s mission is to find answers to the question: “what else can we do besides what exists now?” In that sense, we will always have a lot of work ahead of us, work that will allow DC to shine brighter than it already does.

    In terms of the WaPo comment — I was saying (in other words) that the group will be so good at producing quality collaborations, that even the Washington Post will have to notice. (That’s what I should have said, I guess!) It was a hopeful statement about the quality of work that will come out of the project, not a snobby or marketing-oriented one.

    If you’re interested in getting onto the mailing list, or contacting me, email [email protected].

    All the “Crazy” Best — MCN

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