Sharon Louden, author of Living and Sustaining a Creative Life, comes to Baltimore for a book signing and panel discussion in MICA’s Falvey Hall on Thursday, September 25
Sharon Louden has been a Brooklyn-based artist for the past two decades and her work is held in the public collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Weatherspoon Art Museum, and National Gallery of Art.
After giving a presentation at the College Art Association in 2011 on ways artists can sustain a creative life, Louden was approached by a representative from Intellect Books and invited to write a book. Rather than writing exclusively about herself, Louden decided to interview forty ‘successful’ artists across the country (and two from Europe) to discern patterns and strategies in their ability to keep their practice going.
According to Louden, “What inspired me to organize and edit this book was to be able to share with other artists that no matter how ‘successful’ an artist is perceived to be by the market, we are all in the same boat: artists do many things independent of a gallery to live their lives.”
Initially, what sent Louden out on this line of inquiry was the reality of her life in 1991, just after finishing an MFA from Yale. “I had trouble seeking from different artists how they paid their bills,” she explains. “Not a lot of artists were sharing information. I wanted to change that practice. I believe that artists sharing with other artists is important in a healthy community.”
“This book is meant to inform, inspire and confirm that artists are resilient risk takers and creative in their lives outside their artistic practice,” says Louden. “In addition, it shows that 40 artists can indeed be generous. Through their examples in this book, my hope is that readers will be inspired to follow their paths or gain ideas so they can establish their own ‘successful’ journey – whatever course that may be.”
The book is already on its fourth printing since the first run sold out before its official release on October 15th, 2013, and has been #1 on Amazon.com’s Bestseller List of Business Art References. It was also on Hyperallergic’s List of Top Art Books of 2013. Recent press includes an interview in Hyperallergic blogazine, “How do Artists Live?” as well as over 50 reviews, blog posts and mentions, including an early interview with BmoreArt’s Brian Young here.
A 50+ stop book tour started on November 2, 2013 which includes Sharon Louden and other contributors visiting cities across the United States through 2014. Highlights include events in the Salon at the Art Basel Miami Beach Art Fair, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, LACMA, the 92nd Street Y, Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, The Strand Book Store and many more stops across the country.
“At most of our events this past year on the book tour, the conversation has been active and lively,” says Louden. “The panelists begin the dialogue which is then moved forward by the audience. Almost all of the events on the book tour have consisted of ‘town hall type’ forums that connect artists while exchanging information and hopefully kick-starting independent, creative lives.”
Louden will appear at MICA’s Falvey Hall for BmoreArt’s next official BmoreArt Talk for a panel with Baltimore based artists Zöe Charlton, René Treviño, and the Philadelphia-based founder of Artist U, Andrew Simonet. In addition to the panel, Louden will have book available for purchase and signing (or bring your own copy for signing if you already have one) and Simonet will have his new book, Making Your Life as an Artist, for sale and signing as well. The panel is also being generously supported by MICA’s Career Development Office and GBCA.
“I love the artist community in Baltimore,” says Louden. “There is a great energy in your city, and I am eager to meet many artists there. I am looking forward to receiving the energy from the community as we engage in a fruitful conversation centered around ‘Living and Sustaining a Creative Life’ the evening of September 25th!'”
In addition to teaching in colleges and universities, she continues to conduct Glowtown workshops in schools and not-for-profit organizations across the country. Louden is also active on boards and committees of various not-for-profit art organizations and volunteers her time to artists to further their careers.
We look forward to seeing you at MICA for this event. Please know the panel is free to all, but a rsvp here is required. MICA faculty and students are encouraged to rsvp, but can simply show a MICA id for admission.