Thanks to amazing support from our community near and far, we've met our initial Kickstarter goal of $25,000 with time still on the clock before the campaign ends on Sept. 15, and have unlocked our stretch goal of $40,000.
The stretch goal will ensure that we hit the ground running and are able to build a deck and ramp structure that connects the houses and integrates ADA-compliant updates with a outdoor common space for gatherings, performances, and beyond.
Or as one of our team put it: we're moving from mission critical to mission awesome.
Public Space One (PS1) is moving to a new home in our downtown Iowa City neighborhood. This new home for us just happens to be two (2!) adjacent historic houses.
PS1 is an artist-run, community-driven contemporary art center. We host and produce gallery exhibitions, art and music performances, workshops, visiting artists, dialogue, residencies, and public art projects. Through sustained energy and ingenuity, countless volunteer hours, and an ethos that harnesses and amplifies the creative ideas of our specific community, we have steadily built a locally-resourced, regionally-recognized, and nationally known arts venue. We are an Iowa hub for contemporary art, artists, and audiences who desire connection to and a platform for new art ideas and actions. For 16 years we have done all these things in other people's buildings, and usually underground, but now we’re taking our future into our own hands!
We have built a reputation and been acknowledged as an integral part of Iowa City’s cultural fabric (if often existing as a counterpoint or underground "scene"). The City of Iowa City has recognized our contribution to the local creative community and awarded us the opportunity to purchase two adjacent historic houses on N. Gilbert St. (just a few blocks from our current location). We are transforming this corner into a dynamic and accessible art center that will include:
- a gallery embedded in a welcoming community space
- a permanent home for the Iowa City Press Co-op, our community-access educational print studio, with a new dedicated classroom space and loads of natural light
- a public reading room/archive and dedicated residency studio for the Center for Afrofuturist Studies
- light-filled private studios for local artists
- an outdoor space for community gatherings and art events
The City of Iowa City has supported us in the early stages of making this possible, but we need your help to make these houses an amazing home for art and possibilities.
What can you give to make this happen?
We are using this Kickstarter as a platform to inform our fans of our move while announcing a new level of presence to the broader community.
Our plan (like always) is to do THIS a little differently. We'll be releasing a new video each week during the campaign to shine a light on all the various aspects of our organization, programming, and art community. Along with this video series, we'll continue to provide updates and insights into this process of turning two historic houses into our new contemporary art home.
The north house (at 229) is in good shape and we'll be inviting you in soon! But the south house (225) needs a lot of work before it can house the Iowa City Press Co-op: namely, a new roof, electrical and plumbing updates, and remodeling to turn it into a beautiful community-access print studio.
We also want to ensure that both houses are fully physically accessible, which means remodeling bathrooms and building ramp access. Plus we need a boost to help cover moving expenses (including several tons of printing equipment) to make sure that everything keeps running smoothly during this transition and that we can start exhibitions, workshops, and beyond in our new space as soon as possible. That’s what our campaign is for: a CAPITAL campaign for our small ‘a’ art organization: the money invested here stays here with us and gives ALL OF US a permanent home (or homes, as the case may be) for new art, art action, artists, and art audiences in Iowa City.
We have something at every level (but you already knew this, right? No doubt you checked them out before getting this far in the reading). Here are some images! (Most rewards are partially tax-deductible, please inquire if you want specific details.)
Special thanks to Adam Engelbrecht for creating the music in our video!
Risks and challenges
Our goal of $25,000 will get us started, but it's just the beginning of a long haul and group effort. As this campaign unfolds, money will be invested in prioritizing a quick transformation of the spaces and move from our current location. To say there are a lot of moving pieces (and that some of them are VERY HEAVY) is an understatement.
Luckily, we have a great team in place and one that is motivated by a challenge, especially this opportunity to inject vibrancy into a beloved cultural neighborhood and carry the torch for a new era of visible, contemporary art in Iowa City.
As this campaign unfolds we will be updating the timelines and budget, planning to be nimble, planning for the unknown. As a grassroots and passionate team, we're not afraid to invest our own sweat equity in making this transformation a reality; that being said, solid community support here will make the payoff come quicker and shine more.
That said, the two big challenges to this project (in bullet points) are: 1) the expense and timing of building renovation and making sure that gets carried out before, 2) the expense and timing of moving a lot of things (some of them very, very heavy things).Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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