Jerry Saltz on spaces for artists...

"A window is opening.

In the early 1990s there was no money in the art world. Commercial real estate was temporarily depressed - like now (now is much worse). Scores and scores or artists, gallerists, curators and critics curated shows, opened galleries, started Biennials, opened new Art Fairs (or whatever new model replaces the horrendous way art fairs operate now). Almost all of these people were poor; maxed-out credit cards; built it out of themselves. They started a tremendous new art world. They made new magazines. Because they had to in order to be seen or heard at all.
Covid has decimated commercial real-estate. Windows are opening again. Batons are being passed. - You can start your own museums and galleries and new art fairs.
Many lived illegally in these commercial spaces and offices and store fronts - with no bathroom except down the hall. They carved out corners. It was not that long ago. It was hard; It is hard. But - - - You build communities. There was no help; no grants; no nothing. Just stay up late every night with one-another, work, work, work- always be around other like vampires. You will create an ecstasy machine.
If you build it they will come. Almost every artist over the age of 40 started, participated in, came through all these 1000s of people who self-started and sustained this world.
You don’t need lots of people. (Note: Even then people said “no it’s too expensive; housing is way way too costly; you can’t do it; prices are only 5% lower than five years ago; and al the many things people say again today.) No one is going to do it for you. You have to do it for one-another. (That’s what my idiot social-media philosophy is: We should talk to and do for one another; NOT be talked to from someone in authority.). This is not about government agencies and plans. No one says this is easy. No one wants to “go back to the old days.” This is about the new days. You need energy. Energy.
Mark me

Jerry Saltz