Member Spotlight: Kelly Todd of Under Review
Kelly Ashton Todd is a director, choreographer, and environmental activist based in Brooklyn, New York. She has been a member of Fractured Atlas for almost two years and her fiscally-sponsored project, Under Review, is an environmental dance film series that has been shot at various American National Parks and Monuments. By drawing attention to public lands that are threatened to be opened for industrial development, the series aims to promote the protection of America’s disappearing wilderness.
How has Fractured Atlas benefitted your artistic practice?
Fractured Atlas has benefitted my project and artistic process by assisting with reviewing my grant proposals, creating resources for grant and residency applications, and allowing my donors the ability to make a tax deductible donation. Fractured Atlas has taken care of the business side of production that I was missing during my training so that I’m able to focus on the actual creation process.
How has Fractured Atlas benefitted your revenue generation?
Fractured Atlas created a simple platform where I can have all my finances in one place for donors. They provide ease by sending automatic responses to donors and sponsors.
What specific Fractured Atlas services/programs have you used?
I am currently using the Fractured Atlas fundraising campaign platform. I have also used their advisory services for guidance on grant writing and to help review my website.
Why do you think artists and organizations should become members of Fractured Atlas?
For one, Fractured Atlas is an organization that truly supports artists. And I have found that my donor’s appreciate the ability to make tax-deductible donations. Fractured Atlas also sends monthly emails in regards to grant and residency opportunities which helps to make the grants research process so much easier.
What has been one of your biggest challenges as an artist or for your arts project and how did you push through it?
My biggest challenge right now is the difficulty that I have been met with in my efforts to marry environmental advocacy with dance and film. Fundraising is difficult, especially in a city full of incredible artists. But I’m pushing through the challenges by trusting the universe and receiving support and encouragement from my loved ones and community that inspires me to keep creating.
Do you have any upcoming events that people should know about?
I’m currently in post production for Under Review: Katahdin which takes place in the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument outside of Penobscot, Maine, and is the second film in the Under Review Series. The film tells the story of “The Giving Tree,” highlighting the modern day relationships of man and nature. I am displaying how we use trees as a day-to-day resource, creating a large industry spanning from the initiation of logging all the way to final product productions. The Katahdin community is divided on their support for the protected status of the monument. Half of the community is fighting to continue logging in the timber industry to support their families and the other half is fighting to protect the natural and wild habitats within the monument. Keep an eye out for the film April 22, 2020.
What is your biggest accomplishment as a result of being a Fractured Atlas member?
My biggest accomplishment since I’ve been a Fractured Atlas member has been receiving a Brooklyn Arts Fund Grant from the Brooklyn Arts Council as well as grant from the Puffin Foundation.
You can learn more about Under Review and Kelly at www.kellyashtontodd.com and follow her work on Facebook and Instagram at @kellyashtontodd.
About Molaundo Jones
Molaundo Jones is a visual artist, entrepreneur, and arts adminstrator. As Social Media Specialist, he creates strategies and content for social media marketing and works with our members to develop a comprehensive calendar of events. Molaundo is a New York native, earned his MFA in Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts, and BA in Marketing at Morehouse College. He is founder of The Clever Agency, a communications consultancy and develops professional development programs for Queens Council on the Arts. He has also worked with the New York Foundation on the Arts' Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program and Artist as Entrepreneur Bootcamp and has served as a grant panelist for Bryant Park Corporation, Brooklyn Arts Council, and the Museum of Art and Design.