How much did you say this art costs?
One work is $80. Two are $150. And three only $200. And you can only buy them through The Drop, a new approach to not-for-profit funding and support for local artists. But you'd better hurry; there are only a few to be had.
Here's how it works. Every two months, three different New Orleans-based artists are chosen to each create a limited edition of 100 prints, multiples or unique works. Those works are organized into 150 subscriptions that are tiered: box one includes one artwork, chosen for you by the organizers; box two includes two of the artworks, also chosen by the organizers; and finally, there’s box three, which includes all three works. Only 50 works are available for each box. For their effort, each of the artists chosen receives a stipend of $2,000 with an additional $500 for supplies and, of course, the hope that they are creating future collectors.
And who thought up this idea? It’s the creation of two young New Orleans-based arts writers who believe that alternative methods to fund, distribute and collect art could dramatically expand the New Orleans arts community.
“Yeah, we could make a gallery, but doing that requires overhead we didn’t have,” explains Cameron Shaw, a Yale art history graduate and founder of Pelican Bomb, a New Orleans-based art criticism website. She, along with colleague Amanda Brinkman, who has an art history and visual studies degrees from the University of California, San Diego, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, decided to go a more inventive, less expensive route.
“We were inspired by programs that were popping up all over the country using the idea of community-supported art,” Cameron says. It is, she adds, a growing movement that is reinvigorating the public to buy art, buy local and support local artists. The Drop is doing that by making art collecting accessible and fun through an innovative and affordable financial model.
Now about to close out their second offering, which includes works by New Orleans artists Robert Tannen, Nina Schwanse and Anastasia Pelias, Cameron and Amanda encourage those wanting to own original art and support New Orleans-area artists to contact them soon if they want to subscribe to this next group.
Even better, If you'd like to meet the artists, you can do so at a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, November 8, at the St. Vincent Guest House, 1507 Magazine St. The event is free and open to the public. Join Cameron Shaw and Amanda Brinkman for some free libations and a few munchies. And check out what artists Bob Tannen, Nina Schwanse and Anastasia Pelias are up to.
Meanwhile, you can sign in to The Drop at thedropnola.com to see samples of the work and buy in. Because when they’re gone; they’re gone.
Sharon Litwin is president of NolaVie.