Swaddled is a community driven, crowd sourced series of art collages. Swaddled began from a call from the group, Making Grey-Bruce Home, for a project which involved creating an online resource for newcomers to Grey-Bruce county and to Canada.
April 4, 2019
Links to Project:
Instagram at Woodchuckandbrush
Artist fees for exhibitions
Sales of artwork
Subsidizes artwork by providing services such as facilitating workshops around her participatory art
Hicks shares her artwork, much of which is self-funded, freely as it is an investment to build an audience and to leverage for future projects and exhibits.
Swaddled is a touring, community driven, crowd-sourced series of collages. Each work begins with the text. These texts are newspapers in other languages, from other cultures, donated to her by friends and family. This text forms the background which Jennifer then collages over based on the stories she receives from friends, family and viewers.
After the exhibit was shown for the first time in Owen Sound, I received feedback from the people who saw it, who are strangers to me but who have experiences in those places or with that culture. And then their stories get landed on top of the artwork in the form of collage — additional symbols, icons, words, to represent their reality with that language, and that culture.Jennifer Hicks
Jennifer Hicks is a Canadian visual artist and teacher. Her artwork includes the participatory works — Swaddled and Turtle Island Footprints.
I think this is the way artists, teachers, facilitators need to be — open to what comes, and chase all leads — if we choose to live this way.Jennifer Hicks
Road to Funding Sustainably
Services —Jennifer’s funding model includes revenue comes from offering added value workshops around her participatory artworks. Building a community around her work as well as community co-creation and collaboration are keys to her funding model.
Sales of artwork — When Swaddled goes to its next exhibition location, the Japanese piece which has been sold, will be replaced by a piece in another language and about another culture. “We’ll see, it depends on what viewers recommend and offer, from their stories, their experiences.
Art fees for exhibitions of work — Jennifer looks for places to exhibit her work, aiming for locations that will pay artist fees, while keeping in mind the other kinds of value she gains from exhibition in places where they don’t pay artist fees. These other kinds of promotional value include community building and networking, which may lead to future paid exhibitions
Partnering — Jennifer partners with groups such as Influencers Motivate/Influencers Motivating Influencers for paid opportunities to work and travel, connect, and to promote self as artist, teacher and facilitator. Influencers Motivating Influencers is a group who arrange tours through remote Northern Canadian communities, focussing on arts and wellness. https://www.facebook.com/InfluencersMotivate/ https://www.instagram.com/influencersmotivate/
Into the Future
A really important piece to it is — you choose who align yourself with so that you’re not spinning your wheels putting out artwork to every juried exhibit that comes along or applying just anywhere to show your artwork. It is a thoughtful, meditative process where…having this exhibit at Hamilton Turner Park Library is not a paid gig. However, it makes sense to be there for future, down the road networking and possible other exhibits that will be paid. It’s a tricky situation where you need to learn to be a good thinker, and promoter and networker and those things will lead to the money that you need to keep going.Jennifer Hicks
Providing Swaddled was a community service. It was healing for me and great for the community and led to this really neat community powered feedback opportunity for the viewers.Jennifer Hicks
Jennifer is currently looking for a new home for Swaddled. She is hopeful it will exhibit each year in a new city, at least once a year, and ideally exhibited in a place where they pay artist fees.
Facilitating workshops is a key part of Jenifer’s funding model. She would like to provide workshops around the Swaddled series and feels this would add value to the exhibit wherever it goes
Granting process is only accessible if you have access to the technology needed to apply.
Obtaining funding, applying for grants is difficult for collaborative groups in terms of the scope needed to meet deadlines. Communication amongst members and meeting timelines can be a challenge.
Keys to Success to Carry Forward
Tips for Emerging Artists:
Instagram has been a good place for Jennifer to promote her work, to develop art-related projects, and for connecting with other artists and possible jobs.
Sarah advises that one possibility is to go to your local city or town hall. They often employ someone (with a small budget) to do a yearly juried art exhibit in the city hall.
Poet Laureates ..why don’t we have artist in residence for each city or town?