Artizenship Part 6: Taking Stock

Jan. 22, 2015 | Jeremy Benson

Artizenship Part 6: Taking Stock

This season—whether you see it as a new year, still fresh, or as pruning season, or as the last chilled mornings of winter, or simply, reluctantly, as tax season—is the perfect time to take inventory, run through the accounts, to see what we’ve got before embarking on the rest of 2015. Consider it a pre-spring cleaning exercise.

Looking Back

So indulge me. Here’s what Artizenship has been up to since we started examining citizenship of Napa’s arts community:

1. Eating a donut alone in a beret does not constitute an arts community. That’s why they come in dozens.

2. Napa is full of movers and shakers, and I’m not talking about the West Napa Fault. If one wishes for something to do, one need only to seek it out.

3. And if—that’s a big if—the seeker comes up short, there is plenty of room for all you weirdos in this alive and well art scene.

4. Until the economy of abundance is more than a theory, you can upgrade “starving artists” in your community to “artists,” simply by purchasing their work or time. With dollars.

5. We asked, with no real resolution, how artists can genuinely engage in civic unrest.

Looking Around

Now I’d like to hand the clipboard off to you, the citizens, to take inventory of our arts community. Who are the individuals and institutions lighting the way for the rest of us? What are the movements and the historical happenings that have led Napa’s artistic culture to this point? Where are your favorite galleries, studios, venues? Which could you not live without? What sculptures do you walk by every day without giving them a second glance, a second thought? When you think of Napa’s art scene, what do you see?

Looking Ahead

And, where do you want this community to go? How would you like to see it grow?


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Arts Council Napa Valley 501(c)3 is funded in part by the California Arts Council, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.


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