This is a moment of immense challenge that has already created immeasurable hardship, whose consequences will be with us for the foreseeable future.
In responding to the impact of COVID-19 on the artistic community, we seek very simply to find a way to productively help a sector that will be disproportionately affected by this crisis. I’ve been in dozens of conversations with artists and the teams around them in recent weeks as they watched first a month, then six months, and, in some cases, two years of paid work disappear.
Our artistic ecosystem creates the narratives and signifiers around which we build our sense of self. Often invisibly, without having been to a show, concert, or exhibition—but nonetheless essentially. This system is not only the flowering tree or bush, but also the mitochondria within a society’s fundament. It creates social resilience and it is a huge economic multiplier.
Many of us are lucky enough to have security—though capital may well be devalued alongside markets—to know that we will be OK. We do not ask you to donate or give away, but to build. To bring this community to work with you.
hireartists.org is a way to create other streams of income, to skillshare, and to fill the days of both sides with productive learning, solving old and new problems and getting shit done. This site might last a couple of months, or perhaps it’s something that will work longer.
hireartists is predicated on goodwill, generosity, and trust. Please do not abuse this. Bear with our bugs and mistakes as we try to make it work as efficiently and equitably as we can. We take no cut of any of the transactions, and all of us are passionate members and supporters of the community that this platform seeks to aid.
We hope it helps weather this COVID tempest—for both sides of the transaction!
Vallejo Gantner, Alex Reeves, Erica Schnitzer, Chet Kerr, James Dennin, and the hireartists team