22 USA artists discuss their strategies for coping with problem solving, daring to be an original thinker, becoming early adapters to the changing nature of earning money in America, developing the courage to become forward thinking inventors and profound innovators.
Part of SEED/ROOT Micro Museum's educational programming.
Know Who You Are
Inspiration is Not Mandatory
Just Start Where You Are
Everyone is a Little Different
Using Your Talents
Become a Lifetime Learner
Embracing Taking A Risk
Quitting is Not a Good Option
by Kathleen Laziza
ARTIST BY DEFINITION and MAKE IT YOUR OWN
Premise: Artists are America’s most under-rated job creators. They create products through their own invention and tenacity with a high degree of speculation that their products will have a market to sustain their creativity. They are largely successful because artists dictate the terms of their accomplishments –vs- the amount of personal commitment it takes to be an original thinker. They are unique in their abilities to use their vision to be their guide. We would never advocate that people become artists. That is a very personal choice. Instead we are asking Americans to learn to think like an artist so that they might to help themselves create their own jobs. As the senior curator of ARTIST BY DEFINITION at Micro Museum, I have long admired our four selected talk leaders for their personal fortitude and ability to re-invent themselves when circumstances warranted.
Artist As Interdisciplinary Polymath Jamie Leo turned his time into a bit of a game show as he explored the chemicals of the brain. Whimsy is not unusual for this artist, who he is a skilled storyteller and mischief-maker who pokes at the common or not so common humanity beneath the surface of individual persons.
Artists As Pioneer Mike MacIvor brought together a group of peers who were all “old-school” New Yorkers. Each of them has seen a thing or two through Brooklyn’s rapid economic progress as they grapple with growing artistically in the formidable NYC continuum.
Artist As Activist Pamela Sneed set up a personal interview with a colleague. During her time she discussed her life story and her professional decision-making process as it relates to current published or performative works.
Artist As Life Force Kay Nishikawa developed her time by posing questions that allowed her peers to reveal part of their internal dialog since every artist has to answer to a higher standard because they must please themselves first and foremost.
These talks were recorded October/November 2016 and edited into an 8 part series called MAKE IT YOUR OWN by October/November 2017. These eight 8 – 9 minute episodes highlight how artists address the issues that confront them, experiences that shape them, and how they manage to have staying power in 21st century America where there are no jobs except ones that you invent yourself. Artists create new products in new spaces with new ideas everyday. Each episode reminds viewer of 3 summarizing steps to make their own entrepreneurial talents work for them. Here are the 24 steps to remember.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE
Look deep inside your self, decide what you do best and do that as much as you can.
Success comes from your sense of humor and your sense of curiosity.
If you learn something new, change your actions.
INSPIRATION IS NOT MANDATORY
Schedule routine practice because everyday is another day to get good at what you like to do.
Picture your self in 5 years time and work everyday for that picture.
Thinking helps but doing is better. Stop talking about it and start doing it.
JUST START WHERE YOU ARE
If you take enough baby steps towards your goal you will eventually achieve your goal
Brainstorm about how to go from A to B to C to D. Write them down, revisit them frequently and put them into play.
Feel free to model yourself after other people you view as successful
EVERYONE IS A LITTLE DIFFERENT
Frequently ask your self why but also why not?
As you think about how to market your skills also develop a thick skin
People will question everything you do. It is up to you to prove them wrong.
USING YOUR TALENTS
Make the time to develop social and professional networks that keep on expanding.
Don’t allow anyone to discourage you from your goal. They know nothing and you should move on.
To become a good time manager, sometimes you have to say no.
BECOME A LIFETIME LEARNER
Masterful people often put themselves into uncomfortable positions so they can learn.
Success is always measured over time. Don’t sell yourself short if you think it is taking longer than you wish.
As you redirect yourself you will also be redirecting others around you.
EMBRACE TAKING A RISK
Make sure that you celebrate your resilience for working on tasks that are unique to your circumstances.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. It is mythology that we do anything truly alone.
Trusting your instincts takes personal insight and the ability to modify your behavior rather quickly.
QUITTING IS NOT A GOOD OPTION
Try looking at your problems though the lens of another person perhaps your problems are fixable.
Remember you are a human being and not a robot, you have something beautiful and significant to contribute.
Being grateful is not a platitude it is a life force that keeps on giving.
The following people contributed to these artist talks and video series.
Micro Museum thanks them for their honesty and their ability to share their ideas and talents with us.
MAKE IT YOUR OWN
Video series editors: James Moccia and Stephanie Baldwin.
All rights reserved Promote Art Works, Inc 2017
About Micro Museum: This 30+ year old not for profit art institution has been on the edge of new innovations since it first opened its door on Smith Street in downtown Brooklyn. Executive Director Kathleen Laziza created several educational initiatives that occurred organically through the museum’s SEED/ROOT concepts. They ranged from one-on-one instruction for high school students as they learned job readiness skills (1988-2003) to disciplinary skill classes in art, music, dance, theater and video (1986- 2014). The educational aspects of the museum included early childhood education in public parks, houses of worship and public/private schools in NYC. (1989- 2014) Through the dedication of video maker William Laziza the museum offered a public access television program called Spontaneous Combustion (1984 – 2004) that featured hundreds of Tri-state area artists and highlighted the events that happened at Micro Museum. The legendary art center advocated for Brooklyn's now well known cultural tourism by hosting art, music, dance, theater and video presentations (1986-2017). Some of the most well known events are: Circus Surreal, Fertile Ground, Spring Fever and Pure Hybridness. Currently the artists of Micro Museum are writing tutorials for families and teens, making independent art and hosting narrow broadcast screening events, like MAKE IT YOUR OWN. In 2015 the museum moved all of it’s operations from the 1st floor to the 2nd floor of their location at 123 Smith Street, making it impossible to be as user-friendly as it was when a cultural tourist could walk into the museum from the street. Being successful in the 21st Century requires constant modifications. If you would like to contribute to Micro Museum, feel free to reach out to us. We would love to hear from you and are open to suggestions. Please visit our website for more details about very special events open to the public throughout the year. Also Ms. Laziza and Micro Museum’s musing are available on facebook, instragram, twitter, tumblr and on blog found onsite “Thought Bubbles”.