The first and most prominent stories of Detroit often focus on abandonment. A second story opposes the first with idealism--the hopeful narrative of a city on the verge of rising from the ashes. Third Story is a synthesis, merging the reality of living in the city with aspirations of growth and social engagement.
The mission of Third Story is to infuse the neighborhood with positive activity, as well as promote open dialog and cultural exchange, by bringing contemporary art to the community in a non-traditional space and in non-traditional ways.
Third Story is intended for artists who have never been to Detroit, or have only visited briefly. Artists are invited to take residence in our home - as a member of our household and community - to have a deeply involved experience in Detroit and to create an exhibition and/or project for community engagement.
Started in April 2013, Third Story continues to be a labor of love. As we consider ways of reaching out to artists, spreading the word about the opportunity to be our artist-in-residence, we're looking to gain access to resources that will help us plan and grow in a sustainable way. It turns out that access to some of those resources cost money. This is what we're hoping to do:
1. Join the national Alliance of Artists Communities as an Emerging Program Member. The annual membership fee of $250 includes access to additional fundraising opportunities, benchmarking data and other research specific to the field of artist residencies, and listing on the Alliance website, among other benefits listed here.
2. Register to attend the Alliance of Artists Communities Emerging Program Institute, which is being held in Detroit this June. The Emerging Program Institute is a residency bootcamp that combines best practices from the arts management sector with specific, hands-on information about artists' residencies for individuals and organizations launching a new residency program. The cost for two individuals to attend all three days on behalf of Third Story is $750.
3. Join as an Emerging Member of ResArtis, an international network of artist residencies. Emerging members pay a membership fee of € 75 (approx. $100 USD), which includes access to additional financial support, a publicly accessible profile page on the Res Artis Website (viewed by over 35,000 people each month), ability to post public news items about upcoming deadlines and activities (also appearing in their bi-monthly e-newsletter (Over 25,000 subscribers) and Facebook Page (over 65,000 Fans)), and more.
4. Join as an Organizational Member of Fractured Atlas. The $195/year membership fee would provide us with access to fiscal sponsorship, insurance, continuing education, and other resources for managing the business-side of Third Story.
Money raised beyond the total outlined above will be invested in the physical studio/gallery space on the third floor of our house (updating electrical wiring, insulation, drywall, lighting, etc), as well as equipment (camera, computer, projector) to support future artists-in-residence.
Please visit our new website, thirdstorydetroit.com, to learn more about who we are and what we're trying to do. Feel free to spread the word to artists who may be interested in participating in a residency at Third Story, and PLEASE help us spread the word about this fundraising campaign!
Lauren & Ryan Harroun
Risks and challenges
The development of Third Story has been an organic process from day one, and we like it that way. We're not looking to completely change the way our residency program functions, and thus we don't anticipate any major obstacles as we move forward. One of the things we like the best about Third Story, and that makes us want to keep going, is the very personal connections we make with individual artists, and the experiences we have together. Yes, we could keep doing what we're doing without the funds we're trying to raise - Third Story will always be a work in progress - succeeding at this Kickstarter campaign will provide us with the resources we need to provide improved accommodations and resources for visiting artists.
Ryan has a ton of experience building and renovating - in fact it's his full-time gig. He spent several months last year working with the Powerhouse Productions (http://www.powerhouseproductions.org/) crew on several of their houses, and also has 5 and 1/2 years experience working on our house ;)
We've also got close friends who have jobs like "Exhibitions Coordinator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit" and "Collections and Exhibitions Technician at the University of Michigan Museum of Art" - which means that they know what it's like to build flexible spaces for installing artwork, and we can ask them for help as we plan it all out.
When you combine those facts with Lauren's background in arts management, passion for contemporary art and public engagement, and unrivaled ability to multitask, we can pretty much guarantee that this team will work hard to follow through, even if/when faced with challenges. All we need is the support of our neighbors and friends like you!
- (30 days)