I am really happy to say that I am now officially a member of the artists co-op of the Mesa Arts Center. I’ve mentioned (lamented?) several times over the past few months that the jurying in process was underway but finally, today 3/7/2018 my work is on the shelves and up for sale! Here’s a LINK to the store, it’s a really nice venue and the Mesa Arts Center offers so many classes and events it should be a great experience.
If you’re unfamiliar with co-op’s they are a collection of artists who show their work. There are 44 artists currently displaying their work and the requirements is that the artists are all from Arizona and the work is original. Jewelry, paintings, glass, ceramics, wood, and photography are some of the work. Sales are commissioned and as an artist we’re required to demonstrate our craft at least once per month, about 4 hours time. This is what makes the co-op interesting to potential customers — they can actually see the work being made and talk with the artists. I’m looking forward to my demonstrations, good chance to show how hand cut joinery is done and hopefully promote the craft. Here are a couple of pictures of my main display area:
The process began for me back on Nov. 15th. Filling out the application, submitting good quality photographs, writing my bio, etc. Towards the middle of December a meeting with the committee resulted in official acceptance. What followed was background checks, fingerprinting, and getting my official badge which all lead up to today. The lady I met that is in charge of the exhibits had a phrase which really said it all: ” we’re governed by committee”. That’s a good way to justify why things take some time. Another requirement of being in the co-op is that I too must serve on a committee.
Just like many other woodworkers who love to build furniture, making my handcrafted boxes is a good way to maintain those skills. Being in the co-op and having my name and work out there for the public to see can’t help but be beneficial. My card and links to my website are available there so it’s a good prospect for future commissions. If you’re in the Phoenix area do stop by and visit the center. The weekend of March 17-18 they have an annual event called Sparks going on. This event is free to the public and is a great way to see what the Mesa Arts Center is all about.
Here are two more pictures of the inside of the store, they placed my work in these areas so you can see some of the other artists work. All very high quality.