For those of you who think I never say no…

Last night was my final meeting as a member of the board of directors of the Sculpture Center . I’ve been on the board for four years, and before that served on their artists advisory board. I actually like doing it, and one way or another I’ve been on the boards of various arts organizations for more almost 18 years. It seems to me that to participate in the structural aspects of non-profit organizations is an important part of an artist’s practice, a way of providing empowerment. I’m also fascinated by the ways that people come together in groups to try to accomplish things. I enjoy being part of that process and doing that service. But as time has gone on, I find that both I and the organization are better off if I can be realistic about what I can and can’t commit to. My new job really demands more attention than I’ve been giving it. And I’ve also had some questions about whether the SC and I are such a good fit right now. They’ve just gone through a long period of re-invention, and that has been a wonderful thing to be part of. But now I think they need some solid commitment on the financial and time level that I just can’t really provide. So I decided to step down. I think I need to develop some additional skills before I get engaged in another organizational commitment.

Now if I could just leave the two other advisory committees I serve on!

0 Comments +

  1. Good for you! I have several friends who I never get to see because they’ve got committees or other commitments that keep them running around 24-7. I’m a strong supporter of taking time out to sit on the couch and settle your brain.

  2. Well I am sure they’re going to miss you greatly, I always thought you were a good teacher. I remember when I was an undergrad at parsons, Don P. would talk well about your work. I was class of ’01.

    Just a Side note, I had a huge puppy dog crush on you, one because of your work as it was described to me by some of the Grad students when I was a Shophmore and two…Hot Bear!!!

    Anyway, I would like to know if your showing work? I would love to see it some time?

  3. I am not currently serving on any boards but, having taken over ownership of Miamiartexchange.com (MAeX) since the organization dissolved has been a huge undertaking. MAeX has me attending openings, taking images at openings, talking to gallery owners and artists, writing articles, researching artists, curating online exhibitions, designing, maintaining and updating the site almost daily.

    Before I moved back to Miami from upstate, I served on the board of four organizations. When I arrived back in Miami I served on the exhibition committee of Art Center South Florida. I served on the board of an artist group for about four years. And I was on the board of a cultural organization of a group when the founder and defacto leader died of an anuerysm.

    I agree that artists should serve on the board of an arts or cultural group because it is a way for them to learn about what is involved in making them successful.

    I was just today thinking about one of the groups I used to be involved with. I called the newspaper (back in 1993) and had arranged a personal interview based on MY work. The org. members then criticized me for not promoting them because it was right before their major event of the season. I told them that since I was no longer a member it was not my place to speak for the organization, even though they blocked my P.R. efforts on many occasions when I was a member. I asked, “Didn’t you guys put together a press kit yet? I’ve been preaching about that for three straight years and you haven’t done it yet? Have you scheduled a pre-event press conference? You can’t blame me for what I’ve been trying to get you people to do all this time. I got the frontpage of the arts section because I arranged it.”

    This org. in particular blocked some funding I was about to get from the community college for a statewide conference I was planning out of spite. My conference was attended by a small but dynamic group of people working in the cultural arena. I had to pay for the conference room and P.R. materials out of my own pocket, all mailings and phone calls. This conference was based loosely on a previous one I had been co-director (in conjunction with the Vero Beach Museum of Art) where I brought down Robert F. Thompson, Ph.D. as the keynote speaker. Only one member of that organization attended. When they realized they had missed the boat they tried to get back at me. Everytime I made suggestions about creating documents, such as publications that could be used for grant applications, I was voted down. Yet, every time I created one on my own, as part of the organization, they ran around patting each other on the back saying, “Aren’t we great!” Such pettiness!

    Anyway, good luck extricating yourself!

  4. You are such an inspiration!

    When I started graduate school a few years ago, I had to take stock and cut back on things. I counted it up and realized that I was on 11 boards. I cut them all back — except one, for an arts center that a former student founded and for which I was the chair. I am trying to be better now that I’m out of grad school, but I can feel these things creeping back into my life. I’m of the mind that I might only ever be on one (okay, two) boards at a time from now on. The work is important (and even stimulating) but it can take over your life.

  5. Wow, I’m surprised and flattered. You can see some of my work in the current “Open House” exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of art, and if you look through my old entries in this journal from February, you’ll see images from my last show here in NYC.

  6. Unfortunately. just like the academic world , the non-profit art word is strewn with many people who behave poorly and are manipulators. I feel lucky that I haven’t run across too many recently, but I certainly empathise!

  7. Well what can I say, I thougt it would of been cool to connect, espacially after I found out the you were on a panel of artist with Karen Walker…WOW! I am still art-struck at times!

  8. Wow, I’m surprised and flattered. You can see some of my work in the current “Open House” exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of art, and if you look through my old entries in this journal from February, you’ll see images from my last show here in NYC.

  9. Unfortunately. just like the academic world , the non-profit art word is strewn with many people who behave poorly and are manipulators. I feel lucky that I haven’t run across too many recently, but I certainly empathise!

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