The Art Gym has created a Art Production and Publication Fund to support artists directly with costs associated with making work for exhibition, and to ensure that we are able to further promote accessibility to that work by producing a catalogue for every exhibition.
Giving Direct Support to Artists
Artists often pay thousands of dollars out of pocket for exhibitions at institutions, money they may not get back in sales. The Art Gym is working to give more direct support to artists.
The Art Production and Publication fund will help artists by providing support before the exhibition, so that artist can focus on making their work, instead of on how to afford producing it.
The Art Gym is a non-collecting, non-commercial gallery that supports artists in creating risk-taking and ambitious projects at various stages in their careers.
Alongside providing a budget that goes directly to the artist for materials, we are standardizing honorariums (one of the few professions not regularly compensated for creative work), compliant with W.A.G.E. (Working Artists and the Greater Economy). This kind of direct support from institution to artist is exceedingly rare, and we hope to see the Art Production and Publication Fund become a example of institutional support in the Pacific Northwest, and beyond.
Documenting Innovative Contemporary Art Prior to the creation of this fund, the development of a publication to document and widen the reach of an exhibition has been dependent on outside funding. With the Art Production and Publication Fund, The Art Gym will publish print and free online catalogues, regardless of the artists’ gallery representation or financial means, so that the work can reach the widest audience possible.
With the Art Production and Publication Fund, we will be able to guarantee that we can create a catalogue for every exhibition held at The Art Gym.
Artists, educators, students, arts professionals, and the public make up the audience of The Art Gym, and we're well known as a venue for challenging programming and documentation of the region’s art, making our catalogues the single greatest record of regional contemporary art since 1980.
Helping Artists in their Careers
The Art Gym publications are often artists’ first catalogues, supporting their pursuit of artist fellowships, grants, residencies, and exhibitions at other institutions.
We have a strong history of serving as a springboard that launches the careers of emerging artists and providing future opportunities, as well as being a landmark destination for significant artists’ retrospectives later in their careers.
The Art Gym receives support and services of Marylhurst University – as well as funding from grants and individual supporters – but it is often not enough, and problems sometimes arise. Artists may not receive a grant they were counting on to create the artwork, organizations that give The Art Gym grants often only support one project annually, and often only a small portion of the costs of installing and promoting the exhibition is covered.
Artists are expected to pay thousands of dollars to make work that may not have immediate financial returns, while giving great cultural value to the public at no charge.
And sometimes artists are not eligible for funding, such as Kartz Ucci who we will be showing in the fall. The Regional Arts & Culture Council and the Clackamas County Cultural Coalition are supporting the exhibition in part, but because Ucci recently passed away, her exhibition was not eligible for some of our largest grants.
Honoring Kartz Ucci’s Legacy The first exhibition that will be presented with the support of the Art Production and Publication Fund is a large retrospective exhibition of the work of Kartz Ucci in the Fall of 2015. The Art Gym hopes to honor the legacy of Ucci, a talented artist and educator in Oregon who passed away two years ago at the age of 52.
Ucci joined the University of Oregon faculty in 2004, teaching art and digital arts in Eugene and the White Stag campus in Portland. Her work has been included in the 2010 Portland Biennial, and exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in California, Oregon, Washington, and Toronto.
Many of her colleagues, friends, and former students are donating their time to help make this exhibition a reality.
We will be exhibiting the first retrospective of her work and publishing the first catalogue that fully captures the breadth of her incredible history and body of work. The exhibition will celebrate her digital, text, sound, and installation art. Many of the works will need to be recreated from digital files to fit in a new space, which means printing costs, fabrication costs, etc.
We are so excited and honored to be able to present this exhibition and accompanying catalogue to increase the public’s knowledge of Ucci's impact.
This is where the Art Production and Publication fund will come in - ensuring that we are able to document and share this important work with the community.
History of The Art Gym
Founded in 1980, The Art Gym has produced hundreds of exhibitions, hosted as many public conversations and published more than seventy exhibition catalogues and books, which are available in print and online. Local, regional, and national press regularly covers the exhibition programs and the gallery is known as one of the most important contemporary art venues in Oregon.
The mission of The Art Gym is to increase public understanding of contemporary art of the Pacific Northwest through thoughtfully organized exhibitions, publications and public discussions. As an art space working within an academic venue we are committed to providing artistic and intellectual freedom. The diverse exhibitions and projects produced for The Art Gym provide a context for the region’s art as well as each individual’s art practice. Examples include: large scale projects, the production of new bodies of work, group exhibitions that broaden and deepen connections for regional artists, and the presentation of work in a retrospective of an accomplished artist.
Meet the Curator
Blake Shell is a contemporary art curator and artist. She received a Bachelor of Art from The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, and an MFA in Photography at Savannah College of Art and Design. Shell served as director of the Archer Gallery at Clark College from 2009 to 2012. She then worked as the project manager for the Stroemple Art Collection in Portland, managing a collection of 1700 artworks, as well as a curatorial assistant for the Hoffman Gallery at Lewis & Clark College.
Her curatorial work has gained regional attention in the Pacific Northwest, and a national review on Artforum.com's Critic's Picks. In December 2013, Shell became The Robert and Mercedes Eichholz Director and Curator of The Art Gym and Belluschi Pavilion at Marylhurst University.
The Art Gym is the recipient of a generous grant that will match up to $1 million in donations over the next few years. This means that all contributions we receive on Kickstarter will double your support of The APP Fund and The Art Gym!
We are so excited to be able these amazing rewards to our supporters!
Risks and challenges
This is a new fund, and we will need to raise money for it every year. We are coming to you for support in this inaugural year so that we can KICKSTART the fund, and make the case in subsequent years that the public supports institutions that focus on getting money directly to artists.
We are asking for the bare minimum. We are sincerely hoping to raise well above & beyond $15,000, to ensure that we are able to create the highest quality of catalogues and give artists as much support as possible throughout the exhibition season.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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