Letter from the Director | December

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Last day madness of Artist-in-Residence application drop-offs. We received over 600+ from L.A. artists! (And shout-out to the artist who made me this shirt! You know who you are.)

Last day madness of Artist-in-Residence application drop-offs. We received over 600+ from L.A. artists! (And shout-out to the artist who made me this shirt! You know who you are.)

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I spent the better part of six weeks this fall meeting with A LOT of artists – in October, with the twenty finalists for our 2018 Artist-in-Residence (or, AIR for short) program and in November withthe first fifty who signed up for our second-annual Office Hours meetings. An unexpected common denominator emerged in all of these conversations—a longing for community. Our AIR applicants told us they were as eager to be a part of a cohort as they were to have a free studio space and a monthly stipend and our Office Hours participants answered my prompt, “what is the most pressing issue for L.A. artists right now?” most often with “community.” I listened to some really moving stories about how hard it can be to find and maintain community when school is over; when working two jobs; when you’re new to the city. At the end of the day, we’re all just trying to find our people.

Speaking of our people… I am so excited to introduce our 2018 artists in residence:

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We can’t wait to welcome Susu, Beatriz, Travis, Kelman, and Guadalupe to our new studio complex this February. Check out the AIR page for info about each artist and their work.

Though Office Hours and our Artist-in-Residence program might seem quite different—one is first come, first served and one has a very rigorous application process—they are rooted in the same principles: commitment to artists and devotion to serving our public. In L.A.’s very active museum landscape, if we cannot truly serve artists and truly serve the city, what purpose do we have? To this end, I will continue to think more about the desire for community and what more The Main can do to foster connection amongst one another. I might have a couple of ideas already…

Yours,
Allison Agsten, Director