When you fundraise, you’re asking for money from outside sources to realize your creative vision. As an artist, you’ll have to figure out how much it matters to you who those sources are. Who will you seek funding from and who isn’t a good fit? If the philanthropic arm of a corporation whose work you disagree with would be willing to fund your work, would you apply for a grant from them or accept money if it was offered? Would you take money from a company that you think harms your community? You don’t want to take money from somewhere that makes you so uncomfortable that you wouldn’t even want to use it, but also, you need money in order to make your work. There isn’t an easy answer, and there’s no such thing as purely ethical money under capitalism.
Right now, who knows when we will be able to safely gather to experience art together. But it will happen at some point. And we expect that there will be a tricky and confusing period where planning any kind of event feels touch-and-go, tenuous, and tentative. As artists, we’ll have to be able to make quick updates, shifts, or cancellations even more so than we might have before.
Learn how to use the Theory of Change model to map out your plan and evaluate what's working. Subscribe to the blog and get your printable copy.
Since 2017, Fractured Atlas member The Artist Co-op has sought to provide creatives with an affordable coworking and community-building space specifically for them. Located in midtown Manhattan, members and guests can access desks, rehearsal space, and events at multiple membership tiers. Or, at least, ordinarily they could.
dropshift dance, founded and operated by Andrea Cerniglia, is a “provocative, inquisitive, and authoritative investigator of movement. Based in Chicago, dropshift uses visual art, and music composition in addition to dance in order to “engage viewers in a visual, aural, and human experience...to explode the definition of dance performance and move audiences towards a transformative experience.”
In an unpredictable world, artists need to get in the regular habit of inventorying and documenting your work. That way, if an emergency hits, you’re better prepared to get relief.
How are you doing?
As an artist or an arts organization, you are likely inviting people to events, whether physical or virtual. You want people to attend your play, artist talk, workshop, or screening. In order to sell or distribute tickets (or even register RSVPs) ahead of time, you need a ticketing app.
It’s challenging to keep track of all of the people who are invested in your work as an artist. Who attended your last performance? Who donated to your most recent crowdfunding campaign? How much did they pitch in? Plenty of artists keep track of this crucial information in an ad-hoc, manual way. For example, manually inputting email signups from events into a big spreadsheet or by cross-referencing your email inbox with your crowdfunding platform. While it might be tempting to keep muddling through out of habit, we recommend finding a way to consolidate this information in one useful place.
At Fractured Atlas, we want artists to have the right tools to help you best support your creative practice - whether that’s by providing a fundraising platform and a way to apply to more grants, or by sharing recommendations for collaboration tools. We want you to have the tools you need so that you can focus on realizing your unique creative vision.
During a crisis, the impulse is to help. But it’s hard to know where to start. In the case of the coronavirus pandemic, you might be pulled in a number of different directions. Should you donate to the staff funds for the coffee shops, bars, bookstores, movie theaters, and nightclubs that you would ordinarily be visiting? Should you donate to the big national fundraisers or to small, local, specific ones? Should you focus on food security or making sure that essential workers have enough PPE to keep themselves safe? How many voicemails should you leave for your political representatives?