Some of you have asked me to elaborate on the grant application I have been writing – so I am! We have been having AWE – Artists Window Exhibits – in our town lately. We have had shows in July, August and again in mid-Sept – mid-Oct (yes, now). I have put in a grant application requesting some money to coordinate this project in 2008. It is in the mail!!!
Joe Landry at Rooney’s, AWE, Photography Â© Susan Elkin
Some of us visual artists started meeting over a year ago to connect, build the local economy, and in general figure out how to further our careers as artists. We have a fantastic area full of artists … we are rural and there is a economy rich in agriculture and not money. That is, we are one of the lowest income areas of the whole state (Massachusetts, US). So we need to build the creative economy here.
When tourists come here, they can’t believe how inexpensive the art is. But many local people say the prices are way too high. So we are working to get this area to be a tourism destination to hook up art lovers and artists. By we, I mean much more than our small group of artists. It is a big initiative that is getting support from our whole county. I think we are the size of Rhode Island but with only 70,000 people. And 69,000 are artists – no, that part is a joke. But we do have thousands of artists here.
I have been coordinating this group, chairing, taking minutes, writing them up and sending them out (by email), being the point person and generally coordinating whatever we were doing. I have put tons of energy into having the AWE projects go smoothly.
The local business organization (Greenfield Business Association) has set up 2 Progressive Dinners where people have gone from restaurant to restaurant for each of 6 or 7 courses. Our artists group, Artists of Franklin County, has provided beauty and enjoyment through our work in shop windows. And I am sure you can imagine that there is a lot of work involved in coordinating all this! Which is why I would like to get some financial compensation for a little bit of the time and materials.
You asked what it would mean … that I would be able to more easily be able to take the time to up the quality and attend to the details of this project. What are you up to?
~ Diane Clancy