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Collector's Catalogue Vol. 6, Issue 1: Networks of Support for Artists, Redefining Patronage
by ArtSlant Team

Networks of Support: Carolina Jayaram and the contemporary conduits of patronage

Troy Pieper profiles Carolina Jayaram, recently appointed President and CEO of United States Artists, a national nonprofit that awards grants to mid-career artists.

Modern patronage takes many forms. Gone are the days of direct patronage: a wealthy patron giving funds, housing or access directly to an artist. Instead, artists must rely on networks of support. Grants, residencies, galleries, foundations, nonprofits: these organizations comprise the contemporary conduits of patronage. Arts executive and organizer Carolina Jayaram recently left one such organization for another and speaking with her, we saw what it takes to run the networks that support artists in today's varied and dynamic cultural and economic landscape.

When Carolina Jayaram took the reins of the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC), it offered little in the way of programming and was run out of a small space in Wi­cker Park. Only three years later, the nonprofit boasts career development services for artists, artist studios, a curatorial residency and a sizeable new home with a gallery, all within an 8,000-square-foot building in the West Loop, Chicago's main gallery district. But even with these programs in their infancy, the industrious Jayaram feels it is time for her to move on. She recently left her position as Executive Director of the CAC to become the President and CEO of United States Artists (USA), a national nonprofit that awards grants to mid-career artists.

Jayaram prefers to think of artists as professionals working in the “the creative industry,” she says, and she would like to work to help artists take larger ownership of the corporate sector, as well as the municipal and government sectors. It is part of the reason she has moved to United States Artists, whose mission is to provide artists with resources they need to fulfill what they define as success. Jayaram’s hope is to develop education and other programming that will help lay people value the work of artists more, thus raising artists’ standards of living...

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12 Residencies in 5 Months: One artist's attempt to redefine patronage

After receiving her MFA from SAIC in 2010 Liliya Lifanova found herself asking a question familiar to many young artists: what next? Thinking about the common practice of undertaking artist residencies, Lifanova began Artist in YOUR Residence, a project that explored concepts of modern patronage, bypassing the traditional models in exchange for a direct relationship between Artist and Patron. She lived in patrons' homes where she created work, refining the economics of art and producing dialogue through developing a direct conduit and relation between artist and consumer. Joel Kuennen spoke with Lifanova about the project's successes, surprises, and her encounters with sexist expectations.

Joel Kuennen: Tell us a little about the intent behind your Artist in YOUR Residence project and the impetus in starting it.

Liliya Lifanova: In grad school I created two large-scale productions that changed the nature of my art practice from solitary to collaborative. They were performances on which I worked with multiple people of various backgrounds and with a range of skills. My intent for Artist In YOUR Residence was to push myself further still to explore what it would be like to not be in my studio making art alone, but out there, engaged with the world and making work in response to what I was experiencing. I wanted to see what kind of conversations and art would emerge out of this kind of interaction between myself and patrons...

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ArtSlant's Collector's Catalogue is a special edition publication focused on bringing new artists and new work to the attention of our worldwide audience of seasoned buyers, committed art lovers, and first-time purchasers. The artists included in our Collector's Catalogue can be contacted directly or through their galleries. ArtSlant is pleased to present them for your consideration.  

Posted by ArtSlant Team on 3/20/14

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