In the spirit of the ground-breaking 7 on 7 event run at New York’s New Museum in collaboration with Rhizome this past spring, 88 Dolla Bill$$$ will pair eight leading new media artists with eight up-and-coming entrepreneurs.
The goal of 88 Dolla Bill$$$ is to address the critical issue of artist economic sustainability, and in particular that of new media artists. It has become clear, even as new media art has begun to be considered as a “real” artform, that few artists need funding more than a new media artist, due to the fact that, generally, we don’t make obvious commodities that can be easily sold to collectors.
This is a problem, as new media artists need to earn money. The options seem limited.
1. work a shitty job and try to make work on the side
2. teach and make work during the summer
3. work a shitty well-paying job (eg. programming) and save up money, then quit and make art. Repeat.
Obviously none of these options is ideal.
What we want is an income stream. As was once said of Americans, “the true American artist is the entrepreneur”. The artist cannot be afraid of “the market” – he can’t live without the market. What he needs to do is get out in front and make his own market, in this way he will allow himself the greatest possible degree of autonomy – an essential and elusive element required for truly creative artistic output.
The challenge for these teams of two will to be to develop a prototype of something new – be it an application, social media, artwork, product, public service, or whatever they imagine—over the course of a 36 hours. This new thing will be both a potential revenue generating income stream as well as a catalyst for the development of further ideas from the audience and fellow presenters.
The eight teams will begin their work on December 2nd and unveil their ideas at a presentation on December 4th.
The artists and entrepreneurs will meet on the 2nd where they will briefly introduce themselves and be matched up in pairs.
Ideally there would be a central location at the conference where those that wished to work on site could remain, but it would not be required that the pairs remained on site.
1. Location for launch event and final presentation.
2. Local contact/assistant to work with in the months leading up to the event and over the course of the weekend. Ideally this person would have a good knowledge of local artists and young entrepreneurs.
3. A space at the workshop area that could be made available for those teams that prefer to work on site.
4. A local cell phone in order that I may be in contact with any participants that have questions over the course of the weekend.
This would also be tied into the Experience Sharing event I am proposing: Sell Yourself