Community Supported Art has been sprouting up throughout the United States since it was first conceived by Springboard for the Arts, a Knight Arts grantee, and mnartists.org only a few years ago. In Macon, a local version of the program was introduced through a partnership between The 567 Center for Renewal (The 567) and the Macon Arts Alliance, a Knight Arts grantee, dubbed CSA: Macon.
This incarnation of the subscription-based arts program held its first pick-up event June 22 at the gallery inside The 567. Based on Community Supported Agriculture, the CSArt model allows individuals to purchase shares of the program which result in the benefit of receiving works of art from a group of selected artists. When shareholders in Macon began opening their screen-printed bags filled with art from the five participating artists, the excitement was palpable.
Brooks Dantzler, a retired arts educator, said she decided to purchase a share because she thought the price was comparable to what one might spend on gifts during the holidays. For her, the value of a share, for which she would receive five works of art, was reason enough to become a shareholder.
Mary-Frances Burt, who purchased a share with her husband Jim, commented, “It was like Christmas morning when we opened our cool, screen printed bag to find music, literature, photography, collage and other goodies!”
On display during the pick-up event was an exhibit of work by the five CSA: Macon artists. The food for the event was purchased from The Mulberry Street Market, the weekly, producers-only farmers market in Macon. Along with having the joy of finally seeing the work produced by the selected artists, shareholders were treated to a video presentation of the animation created by CSA: Macon artist Craig Coleman and a special playing of the 6-song album recorded by Heidi Clinite and Anna Mae Kersey.
Community Supported Art: Macon is supported by funding from the Community Foundation of Central Georgia, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Springboard for the Arts.