The Kickstarter Blog

Trade School @ The Whitney Museum, Friday 3/25!

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Ignited by OurGoods co-founders Louise Ma, Rich Watts, and Caroline Woodward who sought to “cross-polinate” “low-brow” with “high-concept,” Trade School uses barder-based education to demonstrate the “economic practices that reinforce values of mutualism, cooperation, social justice, democracy, and ecological sustainability.” In other words, it is a place where people give goods and services in exchange for learning techniques and tactics; a space for the generous and curious, where the interested and interesting come together to decide what is actually meaningful and gleefully share it with one another. It is, to be brief: rad.

Receiving some incredible press from the likes of WNYC and The New York Times to GOOD and Fox Business News, Trade School report cards came back flawless. A non-traditional learning environment where students barter with teachers really struck a chord with a community that—as Woodward knew it to be—is interested in supporting one another. And, thanks to 239 Kickstarter backers raising over $9,000, Trade School is now in its 2nd year. Joined by coordinator Saul Melman and dedicated volunteers Gaurabh Mathure, Elsa Hwang, Aimee Lutkin, Alex Mallis, and Christhian Diaz, this spring’s Trade School is typically located at 32 Prince Street in Soho. 

BUT (!!) on FRIDAY, MARCH 25th, for One Night Only, Trade School will hold 16 participatory classes inside NYC’s Whitney Museum. Classes range from cartooning taught by a 10- year-old to plumbing taught by a philosophy professor, from Feng Shui to “How to Squat the Condos.” In exchange for these classes, students bring objects they’ve made to the museum. A former Kickstarter backer and artist who performed at the Whitney last year, Melman introduced the Whitney to Trade School. As Woodward explains, “this is the first time Trade School will host simultaneous classes, bringing enthusiasts of many disciplines into one space. A hybrid of school, art, design, and economic experiment, the barter for education model is unprecedented on this scale.” 

If you can’t make it to the Whitney, Trade School still has a month of classes left. After that, word is they’re thinking about running another Kickstarter campaign to raise money for barter-for-education software so that people can open Trade Schools anywhere. …You know, they would.

Classes at The Whitney are filling up fast! To sign up for The Whitney event or the remainder of the semester, visit


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