So what ever your views .... Thanks for reading. If you have not guessed or didn't know- We are some of those sidewalk vendors that they are talking about. We have been particapating in First Fridays for about two years hard core. We always set up an eye pleasing booth with lights and plenty of walking room. We always clean up after ourselves. We have supported others to come down, we have supported the galleries, the downtown buisnesses, the Artlink events. We even relocated downtown in the heart of it all- to be closer and more apart of the growing community. We spend the majority of our money on restaurants and shops downtown. So it does bother me a great deal....But not surprised by some of the attitudes.
In the last few months- The Chandler Artwalk has had major concerns,The Second Friday in Mesa have had issues as well, so why should it be a surprise that Phoenix would not?
For me its never about the initial license fee that may be required, or select areas to set up, none of that. Totally fine- thats a given as a vendor. Its the attitude -its the egos- its that someone isn't getting paid, or that someone wants control. A good friend posted a straight forward comment on all this. She said-
1. It IS about the money. And also the egos of those who have "galleries" and shops. A lot of the "gallery" owners wouldn't know Picasso from pig crap. There's usually better art on the street than on the walls on First Fridays. And yes, sunglasses and T-shirts are not art, but the talent and vitality that might be next to them are what art walk is all about. One must ask why are they so concerned? The foot traffic is doing them a service.
2. Soon as anything looks like an event that rivals a real city around here, it gets "regulated".
3. Roosevelt group has 30 spaces? Well, that's not anywhere near enough...who died and made Greg Esser god, by the way?
4. Nobody objects to $70 or sales tax, it's about the space and ALL about the freedom. Just because you have walls doesn't mean you should have power over those who don't, especially when it comes to arbitrating taste.
I agree very much with her views... Thanks Dominic.
Also-Just because you have the money to open a gallery or own a space does not mean that everything you select or show to the public is qualified as great art. That is you showing us what you prefer-or what you have been taught is good art- or who is on your friend list. The screening process for art gallery owners really is not a tough one.For some its harder to get a food handlers card. Think for yourselves. Most good artists do and some some damn good art galleries as well.
So if you agree that there is a problem.Take action. Thats always my point with anything. Take action. Its so easy to sit on your ass and do nothing....
But it comes down to this:
Complain to Mayor Phil Gordon firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: (602) 262-7111
Complain to Councilman Michael Johnson
(the artwalk is mostly in his district)
Complain to Phil Jones
at the office of arts & culture
(He organized this enforcement)
Phone: (602) 262-4637
Beginning in March, 2008 the City of Phoenix will begin an educational outreach effort to inform vendors about the existing regulations that will be enforced. The City of Phoenix will also host a meeting to provide information and resources to vendors on March 18, 2008 at 6PM at the Burton Barr Central Library, 1221 North Central Avenue.