FastCompany : Society6 Is Etsy for the Artsy, Crowds Curate

What happens if you take away the curator and leave everything up to your customers?

Society6 aims to find out. Its goals are greater than simply selling high-quality prints. By creating an accessible social network, Society6 has produced a collaborative community of artists and art enthusiasts, where art can be bought, sold, promoted, and created.

"We've sort of taken ourselves out of the equation," said Justin Cooper, who founded the site along with Justin Wills and Lucas Tirigall. "You don't have to get by our personal taste to make your art available for sale. "

Purchased artwork is printed on demand, with Society6 setting a base price to cover production costs and a small profit for the company. The artist (anyone can join) then chooses the mark up and sale price of the piece--giving Society6 a wide range of price points--and when sold, they keep 100 percent of those profits.

NOTE: Check out Etsy art by Peter Durand (
) and Diane Durand (

Art, Art I Want You

For all of your artists or artistic types wondering if what you make, makes a difference. You are not alone.

Music video for Tanya Davis' song Art by Andrea Dorfman.

Art is a kind of innate drive that seizes a human being and makes him its instrument. To perform this difficult office it is sometimes necessary for him to sacrifice happiness and everything that makes life worth living for the ordinary human being. --Carl G. Jung

(PS. Thanks to Nellie Durand for the link. Nellie makes LOTS of art. Check it out:

Calma: To Illustrate a Village

A young Brazilian street artist, Stephan Doitschinoff, composes spectacular murals and applies his extraordinary talent to emblazon houses, churches and walls in rural cities in his South American homeland. You can see his process, involving stencils, religious iconography, and styles referencing folk art, wood cuts, computer-generated gradients and comics.
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Pain as an Art Form

The tortured artist is as predictable a stereotype as the jolly fat man. All art is a form of communication, and most works substitute one sense (sight, sound, taste) for another.

The Pain Exhibit covers just about the entire landscape of life and, consequently, of pain: fear, love, torture, loss of faith, acceptance, hope and transformation.

Some of the images from the exhibit depict the physical side of pain; others convey the emotional challenges of chronic pain.

Selections from the Pain Exhibit. To see a slide show, click here.

Pain doesn’t show up on a body scan and can’t be measured in a test. As a result, many chronic pain sufferers turn to art, opting to paint, draw or sculpt images in an effort to depict their pain.

One of the most famous pain artists is Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, whose work, now on exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, is imbued with the lifelong suffering she experienced after being impaled during a trolley accident as a teenager. Her injuries left her spine and pelvis shattered, resulting in multiple operations and miscarriages, and she often depicted her suffering on canvas in stark, disturbing and even bloody images.

The Broken Column, by Frida Kahlo (Banco de México Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo Museums Trust)

“People don’t believe what they can’t see,'’ Mr. Collen said. “But they see a piece of art an individual created about their pain and everything changes.'’

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Cherry Blossoms: Mapping the City of Bombs

Discovered via the post "You Don't Understand Our Audience" by Dateline reporter John Hockenberry on
clipped from

Cherry Blossoms is a backpack that uses a small microcontroller and a GPS unit. Recent news of bombings in Iraq are downloaded to the unit every night, and their relative location to the center of the city are superimposed on a map of Boston. If the wearer walks in a space in Boston that correlates to a site of violence in Baghdad, the backpack detonates and releases a compressed air cloud of confetti, looking for all the world like smoke and shrapnel. Each piece of confetti is inscribed with the name of a civilian who died in the war, and the circumstances of their death.

Alyssa Wright began working on Cherry Blossoms last semester, wondering how to think about — and feel about — the civilian war deaths in Baghdad. Alyssa’s genius was in sacrificing herself. After all, it’s not an easy piece to perform. You don’t know when it’s going to blow. It’s shocking and loud, and one has no sense of how others will react. Of course, she won’t get hurt by the compressed air, but she might well be confused for a suicide bomber (or, more appropriately, a mooninite) and arrested.

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Making Art Work @ Catalyst Ranch

This program combines three of our favorite things:
  1. The Chicago Art Institute link
  2. The ultra-creative environment of Catalyst Ranch link
  3. Our friend and colleague Leslie Marquard of Marble Leadership Partners! link

Article by ALLISON RIGGIO | Contributing Writer | Chicago Journal

It may be years since most white-collar businesspeople went to art class, but a new corporate training philosophy might change the way Chicago does business.

The West Loop’s Catalyst Ranch teamed up with the Art Institute to develop an arts-based corporate train­ing philosophy unlike any other.

Aptly named Art-Work, the program utiliz­es the museum’s artwork as a medium for teaching communication and other business-related skills.

Catalyst Ranch, which specializes in hosting eccentric off-site meetings and events for various companies, developed Art-Work in conjunction with the Art Institute as an alternative means to the typical corporate teambuilding activities. The day-long sessions use the museum’s vast collections to illustrate and teach business concepts, and also utilize the creative working environment inside Catalyst Ranch to further develop ideas, according to Bobbie Soeder, explorer/matchmaker (aka vice president of sales and marketing) at Catalyst Ranch.

“Arts-based learning isn’t a new concept,” Soeder said. “But we feel that it’s so timely right now with today’s business climate and the push for creativity and innovation.”

The first half of the session takes place at the Art Institute, where co-workers view hand-selected artworks and discuss how some of the various elements can be related to the business world. Art-Work sessions are co-taught by Sarah Alvarez, the assistant director of Adult Programs in Museum Education at the Art Institute, and a corporate facilitator contracted by Catalyst Ranch. Alvarez brings her knowledge of art history and visual learning to each session while a corporate facilitator is chosen based on their specialized knowledge in one of four categories: communica­tion, creativity and innovation, diversity and inclusion and team and leadership development.

The “Art-Work” training program combines art and corporate business.

“I’ll get a group of people in front of a work of art and I’ll ask every one of them to say the first thing they see,” Alvarez said. “Nine times out of 10 you’ve got almost everybody saying some­thing different. It’s this reminder that we all see the world slightly differently and art is a really great way to have those kinds of discussions about how we see it.”

The second half of the session takes place back at Catalyst Ranch where the group reviews the concepts discussed at the museum and works with Alvarez and the corporate facilitator to make solid connections between the art and their particular business issues.

Facilitators are contracted based on their area of specialization, and Catalyst Ranch chooses from a handful of those known as experts in corporate training. If the staff is having difficulty with communication, Alvarez and the corporate facilitator will choose artwork they feel will help the team fine-tune their communication skills, she said. If cooperation, diversity or other sensitive is­sues are plaguing the group, the co-facilitators can select works from the museum that will create an environment conducive for healthy discussion about the topic.

“The art is beautiful and it’s incredible but there are skills to be refined, discovered [and] honed that apply back to the daily way that group will work with each other,” Soeder said. “It causes people to feel safer because they’re directing their conflict to the art rather than to each other.”

Aside from simply being a means for learning age-old corporate lessons, Art-Work is designed to help employers keep their staffs thinking in creative, innovative ways. By having both an art ex­pert and a corporate guru on-hand, clients are exposed to a dichotomy they might not otherwise have thought to explore, Alvarez said.

“Our driving goal is to engage audiences that think they don’t have time ... for a museum, to realize that, maybe, they do,” she said. “It’s not about coming in with a degree in art history or being able to paint something or other. It goes beyond that.”

Though no Art-Work sessions have been scheduled yet, both the Art Institute and Catalyst Ranch are hopeful based on the history of satisfied clients they’ve each seen in the past. The Art Insti­tute has worked with other businesses, teachers and medical professionals in arts-related pro­grams, and Catalyst Ranch has hosted a slue of creative meetings and events for corporations across the country.

Amy Shannon said she was one of the first to bring her staff to an off-site meeting at Catalyst Ranch when it opened five years ago. Though it may take corporate-types a bit of time to feel comfortable in an arts environment, Shannon believes the Art-Work program has great potential for teambuilding.

“In some ways it puts people on a level playing field because I suspect there’s not too many [people] out there that are in fact themselves experts in the arts,” Shannon said. “It enables people to come at a conversation from a bit of a different slant than what they might normally.”

Tiny Showcase Art Prints

From Kevin Kelly's Cool Tools:

Keeping tabs on the art world is tough and time-consuming. Being a collector is tougher -- and downright expensive. This site does all the work for you and allows you to amass your own hip, limited edition prints for cheap. Sign up for the newsletter and once a week you'll receive a heads up about the artist whose work will be available later that day for $20 a pop. They usually make only 100-200 prints and it's first come, first serve. The first piece I bought on a lark sold out in less than 15 minutes! I discovered the site nine months ago when a friend gave me a gift certificate.
Although I've already spent my gifted wad, I still check the newsletter religiously, almost obsessively. Stumbling on amazing art(ists) is wonderful. Decorating our home with little, unique prints is very satisfying. And part of every purchase is donated to a charity chosen by the artist, too. -- Steven Leckart

Tiny Showcase
Available at

Takashi Horisaki: A Latex Replica of a NOLA Shotgun House, Post-Katrina

WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future: Art for Our Sake
by Sarah Rich | June 10, 2007 7:43 PM

When artist Takashi Horisaki left his native Japan, he moved to New Orleans to spend his first three years in America earning an BFA at Loyola University. He left before Katrina ravaged the area, and returned in 2006 to discover 'how seriously those of us living outside of the victimized area fail to grasp the reality of the tragedy suffered by New Orleans and the lethargic pace of recovery.' So he decided to help outsiders get a better perspective by creating a sculptural replica of a condemned house in the Lower 9th Ward.
This is a continuation of a series Horisaki calls Social Dress (this one being called Social Dress New Orleans -- 730 Days "

The Art of War

Art Collection, National Museum of the Marine Corps
Art Collection, National Museum of the Marine Corps

From On the Media, an online interview with an artist who re-enlisted in order to capture accurate, artistic images of American soldiers in Iraq. The mission of a Marine combat artist, dating back to World War I, is “Go to war, do art.” Combat artist Sergeant Kristopher Battles talks about the challenge of drawing a picture while escaping sniper fire. The artist describes his experience creating drawings and paintings in a war zone at