The Art/Work Conference
The Business Conference for The Arts produced by Life Is Art
Coming. Stay tuned.
The Art/Work Conference mission is to: Educate artists, arts professionals and art lovers; Inform artists and organizations of resources available to them; Engage the arts community in a meaningful way; Promote south Florida as a serious art destination.
BACKGROUND: Culture builds communities. Over and over again, research has shown that culture and the arts are a prime factor in binding residents to their cities. It is a prime factor in quality of life. Not only is it important to residents, but it is also important to business. Culture is a primary consideration for businesses, both big and small, looking to open in new cities.
A strong cultural base is the foundation of any truly cosmopolitan city. As Miami grows both in size and stature it is incumbent upon us to make sure that cultural foundation is stable. Education for artists and cultural organizations is a dire need to keep them from leaving or closing. Right now, as everyone knows, south Florida is suffering a creativity drain. Artists are moving and organizations are closing down.
Miami is home to some of the largest and most exciting art shows in the world. Despite this, many south Florida artists and arts organizations are still struggling. While there are a variety of seminars and panels presented throughout the year by a number of different organizations, there is not a large conference dedicated to the business of art that gives artists and organizations a unified location to gain a wide selection of knowledge, as well as network and find new resources.
The Art/Work Conference aims to fill that void.
FORMAT: The conference follows an engaging and informative format of roundtables, discussions, panels, seminars and breakout sessions facilitated and led by acknowledged experts on a variety of subjects. It also includes time for networking and socializing. Of course, an art show is part of the conference, showcasing some of the best of south Florida art. Scheduled well-known speakers insure that all aspects of the art world are covered, business, finance, technology, art appreciation, youth, promotion/sales/marketing and legal issues all as related to art and artists. The inaugural conference is scheduled for late summer 2013.
There will be three tracks: 1) Artist, 2) Professional/Organizational, 3) Collectors/Fans. The goal is to provide an educational aspect for everyone working in or interested in the arts. Particularly key is the track for art collectors and fans, given that one of the issues facing Miami and south Florida is that local collectors do not purchase local artists in the same numbers as in other large cities. Also, because Miami is a young city, and an immigrant city, the new residents need to know that there are amazing artists right here in their new home. The tracks for artists and arts professionals will contain information regarding the business, from marketing to financials to health care. We plan to include a technology aspect, both as a form of outreach through social media and online marketing, and as a tool for creating new mediums and new kinds of art.
In addition, the conference includes a special ArtCamp track. â€œBarCamp,â€ â€œWordCampâ€ and now â€œHeartCamp;â€ the â€œCampâ€ phenomenon is sweeping the country. The Camp format is all about engaging and informing communities through an ad hoc and open format. The ArtCamp track is user-generated with open, participatory workshops/panels.
In order to keep the cost to attendees down, the conference will be funded primarily via sponsorships and grants, as well as fundraising events. The goal is to target the cost at $35.00 for the weekend per attendee. It is important to make it accessible to as many people as possible.
INVOLVEMENT: In addition to education and networking opportunities for the attendees, another goal of the conference is to promote those organizations that provide ongoing support for artists, art organizations, non-profit organizations and related professionals. There are numerous groups doing excellent work, but still, too many people are not taking advantage of them. Having a large-scale event is an excellent way to generate awareness.
One way we are designing for organizations to be a part of this art conference is to offer them the opportunity to take ownership of a few of the breakout/workshop sessions. We are planning on having between 15 and 20 sessions during the weekend, and each organization would present a few. All the participating organizations would be listed in the promotional material, press releases, flyers, schedule, etc. So, they get quite a bit of exposure.
The Conference is designed to be an annual art business conference growing to serve a wide audience in the long run. Now is the time. This is the place.