If you have the right plan, and enthusiastic artistic people, you can create a long-term viable arts community that will be remembered.
Build your own support
Every artist or arts groups need support, and any artist can support themselves if they have the right approach and an involved community around them. People will be willing to be involved if they see that you are set up correctly and produce unique, diverse and exciting artworks.
Here’s where you can begin
This is where any smart group or business must start. You don’t need to waste a lot of time for no reason on this one. The Australia Council already has a broad and concise document that will lead you through the requirements to set up an arts plan. What’s My Plan?
If you need a space, anything will do to start with. A garage, a granny flat or a spare room. The type of space depends on how many in your group and the types of art you’ll be producing. Old industrial areas are favourites for many arts groups. You can rent these out at a minimal cost and they are usually big and mysterious enough for lots of creative collaborations.
Again, Oz Co, The Australia Council has your back. If you don’t want to talk to them, which you should because you can always find someone there willing to offer their experience, read their Marketing Strategies for Arts Organisations.
Open and free collaboration between artists can be the key to a well-finished, professional and profitable project or artwork. Each member of your groups will have their own unique skills. Recognise and use these skills to benefit the group. But, you must all work to your goals as a group. There’s no use every member doing only their thing all the time. A good collaboration will benefit all members, creating a harmonious group.
As a group, you will have lots of friends. Before showing any of your collaborations to the wider public, get feedback. There’s always something that can be tweaked and a new suggestion to incorporate. There’s always something good in every artwork or project. Take the positive approach always: you’ll get a better result for all in the end.
This is what your group can do best. Social change through art is as old as art itself. You don’t have to set out with social change in mind, but there are so many issues today that any artist can create a work which reflects or adds to the conversation about an issue through the art. This can be the driving force of the group if that’s what you want. Issues brought out into the public by a group always get stronger and longer attention by the media and the artistic world.
Build your community from the people around you and groups connected to art. Art lovers are everywhere, and just waiting to be part of something new and fresh. Send out media releases. There are several avenues today where you can get greater exposure. Of course, building all your social media content and getting it out there is a priority. Get an email list going. It’s free with MailChimp.
Never stop taking on ideas and issues. Growth and movement are the keys to keeping an arts group going. Once you’ve done your first project, add something new, something bigger, like a connected after party. You can sell tickets, food and artworks to help the group keep going.
Do something different. Take on an artist or an idea that is totally left-field from what you have done. Find opportunities through your connections online and in the real world. Or, try Opportunity. It will find connections and jobs in your field.
This also goes without saying. Love what you do. Love the arts and an arts life. It can be like nothing else on earth and reward you more than any other job, pastime or hobby. Not that the arts are any of these things, but, the arts change the world. You can leave your mark on the world through your art, and as a group you can leave an indelible mark that is written about, praised and loved for centuries.