Category Archives: #siouxfallsartists

EMILIE NETTINGA: AN INSPIRED INTERVIEW

Upon introductions, Emilie started in describing her recent artwork at her day job, Schmitt Music. The mural on the wall was installation-mounted to be sculpted to her designs of Sioux Falls, and the high school marching band community near the music shop’s location. 

“It’s definitely a learning experience. It’s new for me. I usually do clay sculpting. Actually, right now I am doing a series with beeswax, so it’s all different stuff. This is definitely something different – applying heat to it, and burning myself a lot.”

Did your boss ask you to create this?

“Yes he did. That’s what I went to school for, and I have degree in. This is my day job. They just built this new area for our repair man to have his own space to do instruments. This wall here was just big and plain. Actually, this is like my fourth attempt at doing this wall. I’ve painted it over and over and redone it, because that’s kind of an artist thing, but I never found what I wanted to do. I was like, I’m a sculptor and not really a painter, so lets do a wall that I can kind of make three dimensional. So, that’s what I’m going for.”

Describe to us what type of work you do, and your preferred mediums:

Sculpting of all different materials. I use to say I’m just a ceramics sculptor, I’m just a clay sculptor, but I’ve definitely branched out these past couple of years. Like I said earlier, the beeswax is super new for me…then styrofoam, and mostly three-dimensionals. 

Did you go to school for that? 

I went to school for fine art, but I had to study all the different mediums. To do that, you have to do painting, and printmaking and all that. 

Do you have more work at your house?

Yes, I have a series right now that I’m working on that is all about honey bees. I’m actually using real parts of beehives, and then beeswax to sculpt bees out of honeycombs and the wax.

All The Queen’s Drones, beeswax on true brood frame and hive box drawer.

How long have you been doing your specific medium? How has your work evolved over time?

I would actually say for sculpting it’s been since college. Probably about 9 years I’ve been doing all creative stuff, not just one certain thing. I’ve done all different crafts growing up…not just one specific thing. Oh man…overtime just the simple basic pottery wheel stuff, like cups and bowls, to putting it on the wall. 

Never done anything like this before, though. Did one sort of wall thing that was actually downtown. In the basement of JAM there was a thing called Art Maze, last year. They asked local artists to pretty much do whatever they wanted with the space. People walked through it like a maze. I did drywall mud on the walls, kind of like a mural to do something different, but never with styrofoam. 

Are there any factors that led you to where you are today?

I mean it’s kind of a cliche thing. I was doing something with my hands since I can really remember. Not necessarily coloring in coloring books, but kind of building and making things. It eventually led to the three-dimensional stuff. Just trying to do a painted mural like the one here took three different times, and kept getting painted over. I just couldn’t get it on the flat perspective, it didn’t look good to me. So, it evolved into this.

What usually inspires you to create your work?

Honestly, for this specific one right next to us, my experience from working here these last couple of years. I didn’t know a lot about the band scene and high school marching band until I worked here. Right down the street is the biggest Sioux Falls high school. In this area, and kind of in the country, they are really good. Their marching band performances are outstanding. Just hearing them in the summer, and their practices inspired me. So, this mural is going to be kind of a city with marching bands and stuff like that. 

The rest of my work, like the beeswax and everyday life things…it’s kind of advocating, because bees are super important. So, it’s about using the most natural things. All of it is the real thing. I’m using real beehives, and not using glue or paint. All the materials belong to bees. 

How long does it typically take you to complete a project?

This one took me a long time. Since like last December, so that doesn’t count. This one would be my longest one. I don’t have a specific set date on it, yet. But, I would say for me it takes longer than a lot people. For me it takes months to do sculptural things. I can’t do quick drawings or paintings. People can do stuff in like a day. Takes me quite longer to do stuff. It also, takes me longer because I have a 3-year-old, and I have my own business, and I work here. 

What is your other business?

I just started two months ago – art appraisal, and music instrument appraisal. So, I’m fitting it all in. It can definitely take months to do sculptural things. If its clay, it takes building, letting it dry, and firing it. I don’t get to commit to a lot of shows, because I don’t have a big compilation of works waiting around. But that’s ok, that’s just who I am. I have stuff made specifically for certain things. 

Emilie’s studio.

Have you sold any of your work?

I have sold smaller works. Downtown Sioux Falls does a great job with the downtown shows for local artists and stuff. The last couple of years I’ve done little clay pieces that were framed. I made like relief things, kind of like this with clay, and actually just fit them with regular picture frames. No glass or anything, and they were painted and everything. So, I’ve sold things like that.

Vivian Vintage, framed ceramic bas-relief-frame is also upholstered by hand.

Do you have anything you want to work on in the future? 

Yes I do. I feel like it’s kind of secretive, but I’ll give a clue. I definitely have a big idea specifically involving coffee, and like the downtown coffee scene. Using actual parts of coffee, the beans, and all that. 

Any skills you would like to develop over time that you haven’t yet?

I don’t know. I would definitely say, sculpting things I have never tried before. Metal working, actually…not sure if you guys noticed the sculpture walk. I would like to do a sculpture like that, but I haven’t done anything that huge, monumental or big. So, just learning how to work with bronze is a long-term goal of mine. 

Gilded Goldenrod, framed ceramic bas-relief.

How has Sioux Falls influenced your work? What are your thoughts on the art community in Sioux Falls?

I’m not native here. I’ve been here for like 5 years or so. So, just kind of taking it all in – a lot of the downtown vibe, the people that are down there. The art scene has been influential. I’ve even included the city logo, and the city itself with the old buildings in some of my works. 

I think it’s really growing. It’s kind of…I use the word vibrating, and you feel it when you are down there. It’s just growing a lot. People should check into it. 

What advice would you give to anyone starting out as an artist?

I would say, just be authentic, and just be who you are. Don’t try to fit in a certain bubble of art. What you are inspired to make, make it. Make it genuine, and for yourself. There will be people who will find you. 

FIND EMILIE:
Facebook: @emilieearmark
Instagram: @emilieearmark
Website: EarMark Evaluations

ADAM BEILKE: AN INSPIRED INTERVIEW

This college student, and Sioux Falls native, has art in his bones. Say “hey,” to Adam Beilke!

Describe to us what type of work you do, and what your preferred mediums are:

So, I’m kind of like mixed-media. I like making a lot of digital stuff, because I’m a Graphic Design student. I like doing that, but I also respect the art of traditional acrylic painting, so I do a lot of that, too. Just, like, all across the board.

Do you go to college then?

I’m a second year at Southeast Tech, and it’s only a 2 year degree.

How long have you been doing your specific medium? How has your work evolved over time?

Digital probably 3 years, and then painting I’ve been doing since high school.

I’m always looking at new artists and new styles, so I’m always getting inspired by different stuff…getting new ideas. I think I have a better understanding of what I want to make as time goes on.

Who are your favorite artists?

Off the top of my head, Keith Herring, the 80s artist. I like his simplicity. I like a lot of famous stuff like Picasso and Andy Warhol.

Some other favorite artists include Keith Haring, Alex Grey, Adam Jones, Craig Gleason, Sidney Howard, Nick Guenzler, Karnn Bhullar, Allie Craig and Merritt Cates.

There’s some cool local art, I just can’t think of any local artists off the top of my head.

Were there any factors that led you to where you are today?

I was just always interested in art in high school. Ever since I got out, I’ve been trying to book art exhibits and stuff. So, I’m always continuing it and practicing it.

Do you display your art anywhere?

In the process of making new pieces for my second art exhibit with my friend, Sam Babcock. He and I have known each other since middle school and he was the first person I reached out to about a collaborative show. He and I rented out gallery space at the Museum of Visual Materials this past spring. That was my first art show. We’re going to have another one in the summer. I plan to also work with some other local artists sometime in the near future.

What usually inspires you to create your work?

Usually other peoples stuff. It depends. I kind of have to be in the mood for it. If I have an idea, I have to act on it, and I never know when it’ll hit me. So, it kind of just varies.

How long does it typically take you to complete a project?

Usually, it can only be a couple hours if I’m just sitting down and working on it. But painting, it can be like hours on end. That stuff takes like a long time.

Do you have anything you want to work on in the future? 

I am currently trying to create and develop a clothing brand called “Viable Psyche.” This brand will serve as a way to tie in my passion for clothes-making, along with my design and art compositions. The name and logo represent growth and functionality between the mind, soul, or spirit, yet I encourage people to find their own meaning within its style. As of now, it doesn’t have an official website, but I do have a temporary artist shop using Threadless. I hope to be able to fund and launch a more independent website in the future as the brand (hopefully) grows. I’m selling shirts at Last Stop CD Shop, and also a record store downtown, as well.

Any skills you would like to develop over time that you have not yet done?

In the art world, maybe watercolor. I’m awful at watercolor, but my dad’s really good at it. I’ve never gotten to master that. I’m always retracing over my mistakes and stuff. I don’t know…I think there’s always a lot of stuff you can do with digital art. People are always creating new things and trying to figure out new technical stuff, and finding new techniques all the time.

So, you said your dad does watercolor painting. Does that inspire you?

Yeah, it’s weird because I’ve been drawing since I can remember. My mom’s also an art teacher at Lincoln High School. It just seemed right.

I find that my purest form of inspiration comes from listening to music. Artists tend to rely on looking at what other people are making, which can be a vital way to keep on top of trends and styles, but using music can be a great tool in coming up with my ideas. My CD and Spotify collection span across many genres, causing different emotions and thoughts to transfer upon listening. There’s nothing better than being able to tune out and start from scratch using only the creative influences of audio.

How has Sioux Falls influenced your work? 

I really like the culture here. I’ve been to a ton of exhibits at the Washington Pavilion. I think downtown has a cool creative scene. I think we all kind of inspire each other a bit.

What are your thoughts on the art community here?

Pretty cool. I like them. Like I said, I can’t name any local artists off the top of my head, but seeing stuff that’s around, it’s cool that we’re adapting to new styles and stuff.

What advice would you give to anyone starting out as an artist?

My advice would be not to try too hard. Being yourself is the most genuine thing you can do when it comes to being an artist. You don’t have to make a canvas. Draw whatever’s on the top of your head. Starting out with just a sketchbook, you can get as many ideas out as possible, then you can kind of pick and choose projects. Just starting out with a sketchpad and being original, drawing to have fun – those are the most important things I can recommend.

STORE: www.viablepsyche.threadless.com

INSTAGRAM: @viablepsyche

FACEBOOK: @viablepsyche

MOLLIE LAGE: AN INSPIRED INTERVIEW

“The Most effective way to do it, is to do it.”  – Amelia Earhart

With a heap to do the next handful of months – like finish graduate school, a graduate committee review, gallery exhibitions and shows, commissions, teaching a photo class for the first time, and full-time teaching at Washington High – Mollie Lage still carves out time to get in her studio, and hustle that art. We could not think of a better local artist to kick off the year (and revival) of our Inspired Interview Series. So, without further adieu…meet Mollie!

Describe to us what type of work you do, and your preferred mediums:

The art that I make when I’m not working on commissions is mostly abstract, and socially or emotionally motivated. I call it conceptual art because it’s based off of ideas rather than physical subject matter.

I also enjoy creating works that represent stories, which is why commissions are so important to me. It gives me the chance to bring someone else’s idea to life, and is a unique opportunity to give back. Acrylic and charcoal are my mediums of choice, but as a high school teacher, I’ve been dabbling in just about everything!

What’s the story about the people that you paint?

The show that I’m working on right now is called Visual Language. I teach at Washington High School where there’s a high ELL (English Language Learner) population. For instance, the parachute painting is called “Inadequate Safeties.” These students (some of them coming from refugee camps or war town countries) don’t always have the resources that they need to succeed, not necessarily academically, but in a lot of other ways, which is why I’ve been using my recent artwork to gain support for LSS Center for New Americans, an amazing source of help.

Old Enough”, the painting of a hand holding the balloons, is about the how in some countries birthdays aren’t celebrated, so when coming to America, the children have no idea how old they are. When some immigrants and refugees come into the United States, they have to give a date of birth, so they just put down January 1st of whatever year they think might be right. So, thinking about the mental ability of an average 9 year old versus an average 13 year old, that’s a disadvantage in itself. The balloons are for those students.

The portraits of the ladies are an attempt to represent idea formulation, and potential growth coming from people who don’t look the same as one another. Something that I’ve noticed as a teacher is that when a student doesn’t speak English very well, there can be a tendency to feel it’s necessary to water down the content they’re supposed to be learning. However, unless there has been major trauma or an event that has caused cognitive or educational delays (which is sometimes relevant), a 16-year-old who doesn’t speak English is just as aware and capable as an American born 16-year-old. Some adult refugees or immigrants were doctors in their country, but now have menial jobs or no jobs because of the language barrier, and the assumptions that employers make. I wanted to portray that thought, so I’m calling the series, “We are not weak.”

How long have you been doing your specific medium? How has your work evolved over time?

The first time I used acrylic, other than when I painted Christmas decor with my mom, was in high school, but it terrified me then because I was used to drawing. I got heavily into painting my sophomore year of college, and have been working with it since then, which was about 8 years ago.

Over years of teaching more realistic and technical skills that I wouldn’t necessarily say I had honed in on in high school and college, my work has turned from almost completely abstract (focusing mostly on color and texture) into something somewhere in the middle of abstract and realistic. I still love abstract painting, but I’m not afraid to get highly detailed in some areas of my work. I’ve begun to love making artwork that resonates and means something to other people, too, even ones that I don’t personally know. It’s so enriching to facilitate that connection.

Were there any factors that led you to where you are today?

First of all, my family has always been supportive in my artistic endeavors, so I don’t know where I’d be without them. At first that [endeavor] was music, but in high school I started developing a strong passion for drawing. When I went to the University of Sioux Falls, I went as an art education major with a music minor. Then, I dropped the education major, because the idea of teaching terrified me, and I added a psychology degree instead. Because of that switch, which I eventually switched back, I interviewed for an internship at Sanford in the arts and healthcare realm. I was offered the internship, which was a wonderful, heart wrenching, inspiring experience. Through it, I grew exponentially as an artist because of the emotional impact of working with children and adults who were battling, winning, or losing to cancer. Not only that, but the other artists that I worked with, and the unlimited number of supplies at my fingertips, funneled me into a making spree that hasn’t completely stopped since then. My husband, Chase, has also been a huge support, pushing me to make when I want to avoid it. We’ve been married for 6 months, and I’ve done more with my art than ever before.

Opportunities that fell into my lap, like traveling to Europe with my choir and art department in college, changed my life, my way of thinking about the world, and expanded my brain. Those thing I never expected or even wanted to experience, because I didn’t understand how immensely important they would be in my life. Traveling and teaching are an accurate representation of how my artist journey has been going so far – not knowing I needed something, and then having it plopped in my lap. I thank God for leading me here, allowing me to work my butt off doing what I love. I think it’s so important to say yes. even when you’re scared or don’t feel ready, because that’s how you’re forced to get ready, because that’s how I got here.

What usually inspires you to create your work?

It’s different every time. It can be something social or emotional that is triggering an urge to make. Sometimes it’s just a great way to think through a problem or an idea. Other times, a story has been shared with me, and I am trying to get it down for that person or that group of people. Other times it’s recreational, and fueled by the music that‘s playing.

How long does it typically take you to complete a project?

Until recently, I would go through spurts where I’d paint for 2 days straight, and then wouldn’t paint for weeks or months, but lately I’ve been trying to be more consistent. The amount of time a project takes really depends on the size and complexity of the project, but I am a pretty prolific painter when I get down to it.

Do you have anything you want to work on in the future? 

As far as artwork goes, I plan to continue doing a mix of commissions and originals. I plan to show Visual Language in 2019 and 2020 around Sioux Falls, calling more attention to the Center for New Americans. I plan to have WHS student work up alongside my own work at Dunn Bros in March. After that, The Museum of Visual Materials is hosting my work from September to October, and then I’ll be showing at the downtown Coffea from December to March of 2020. I’m working to fill up the year!

As that body of work is being shown, my plan is to continue with the fundraising project that I’ve been doing the last few months. I just created a website, MLSFStudio.com, which I’m using to host print sales of my own artwork. Each season I’ll be making mini prints of that artwork available. 50% of the proceeds from those mini print sales will be donated to the Center for New Americans.

Any skills you would like to develop over time?

Developing myself into a local business owner is something I’d like to do, but as far as making art goes, I’ll never stop working on my technical and design skills.

“Blown Away” Acrylic and Charcoal on Birch Board, 2018

How has Sioux Falls influenced your work? 

Sioux Falls has been a lovely supporter of the arts since I first moved here, and it’s only getting better. My students here, and the people I interact with at work and in my personal life, are frequently leaving me feeling motivated to make. Obviously, my teaching career at Washington in Sioux Falls has been a huge influence in my latest body of work.

“The Will” 30×30 Mixed Media

What are your thoughts on the art community in Sioux Falls?

The art community here is smaller just because Sioux Falls is smaller, but we are definitely blossoming, and seeing more and more people reaching out to get the arts involved in their projects. We have the Sculpture Walk, the Pavilion with Arts Night and the fine arts center, First Fridays, and more galleries and places willing and ready to host artwork. We’re definitely growing, and with that growth, more opportunities to be successful as an artist here. Lastly, most Sioux Falls people see the value in supporting local artists, businesses, and food producers, which has created an encouraging environment for us to do what we do.

Mollie with her cat, Chip.

What advice would you give to anyone starting out as an artist?

Just keep making, and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Hone your skill and be diligent. Don’t take criticism harshly even if it’s harsh, just consider it. Look at what you make, and either toss the criticism to the side, or take it as kind advice and use it to get better. Even if you don’t always feel confident about what you’ve made, which you won’t, put yourself out there to other people anyway, because as a collective of human beings with lots of opinions, skills, thoughts, and ideas, the people around you are your greatest resource.

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Find Mollie’s work!

FACEBOOK: MLSF Studio

INSTAGRAM: @mlsf.studio

WEBSITE/SHOP: www.mlsfstudio.com

P.S. Check out our Art Educator Interview with Mollie from back in 2015!

CFA: JAM January Show

Call for NEW ART  

JAM Gallery January show | From Auld to New

Requirements: Art needs to have been created within the last 6 months, and not yet shown. Multiple pieces welcome. A photo of your face also needed.

Pieces due to JAM by the 17th. Show goes up on the 18th. Reception is on the 19th. Art hangs through the end of the month.

Direct message Sam Lopez or JAM with title/price (and photo of your face for promo). Questions, contact Sam at 605-254-5211.

GREAT PLAINS WATERCOLOR SOCIETY SHOW

LIBRARY SHOW
November – December, 2018
Downtown Public Library, Sioux Falls

VIEW GALLERY HERE

JAM GALLERY OCTOBER FEATURES

Come check out these great artists in our gallery through the month of October!

Sean Boettcher

What medium do you use?
Prefer oil, but will play with acrylic or crayon…don’t really have a set style. I always try to do something new.

What inspires you?
Depression kind of helps inspire me to create. The dark places my mind goes gives fuel for making art.

What is art?
Everything can be art. If you’re creating something, you’re an artist.

Terri Brown

What medium do you use?
Mixed Media, Found Art Assemblage

What inspires you?
Oh, my. Running across an item and I know immediately what will become of it in my story telling.
Joseph Cornell.

What is art?
Whatever inspires me!

Mikey Martinez – Comic Book Genie

What medium do you use?
Digitla Art – Program Clip Studio
Fun, broodful, poppy, bitchy, little harsh.

What inspires you?
Smiles, getting sweaty over nerdom/geeking out, skills, “feeling”

What is art?
Art is storytelling, and everything is storytelling. So, everything = art.

[Photos by JAM’s awesome intern, Audry.]

Artists Support Network Free Open Sessions

In an effort to provide artists and creatives with an environment of business support and coaching, The Watering Can is beginning ASN (Artists Support Network) open sessions the 2nd Wednesday every month starting Oct. 10th.  This is a place to come to network, pose a business challenge & get help in finding a solution or just hang out with other like-minded people.   It will be a safe place to talk about failures and rejoice in successes.  As the creative community embraces these monthly gatherings, professionals will be invited to share their expertise in topics such as: grant writing, application completion, technology, social media and marketing.   Stop by the Sioux Falls Arts Council office 326 E 8th St, Sioux Falls the 2nd Wednesdays at 6:30.  Bring a munchie to share.

To Register:  ASN – I will attend

The Watering Can is fiscally sponsored by the Sioux Falls Arts Council with a mission to embrace the arts through community development and assistance to artists in their professional and leadership development.

The Watering Can     www.thewateringcan.org   FB:@thewateringcansf    info@thewateringcan.org

REGISTER: Business Basics for Artists and Nuts & Bolts workshop

The Watering Can’s mission is to provide assistance to artists in their professional and leadership development. Beginning in October The WC is presenting Business Basics for Artists and Creatives and a Nuts & Bolts workshop. 

GROWING MY BUSINESS: Business Basics for Artists

With support of the Sioux Falls Community Foundation and The Sioux Falls Arts Council The Watering Can is offering a series of 4 classes focused on business development.  The series Growing My Business, Selling More will begin Thursday evening October 25th  and continue each Thursday through November 15th  6:30-8:00pm.  Sessions will be held at the Sioux Falls Arts Council office 326 E 8th St, Sioux Falls, SD 57103.

This series is a perfect for creatives who want to move their business forward.  It is important to understand the tools needed to promote a business as well as using demographics to identify a target audience. Not everyone is a prospect and learning to qualify who is saves time and frustration.  There are many ways to generate income and we will dig into various possibilities.

Topics covered:

  • Tool kit and portfolio
  • Marketing basics and qualifying prospects
  • Generating income
  • Pulling it all together

Fees for this series are $50 for all 4 sessions.  For more information regarding the sessions email info@thewateringcan.org or call 605-271-2904.

To register: Grow My Business Register


NUTS & BOLTS

A one-day workshop of 4 sessions Nuts & Bolts will be offered Saturday October 20th. Registration will be for the full day or individual session.  There will be a gathering for all who attend after the last session to network, share the learning and experiences with other creatives.

This workshop is geared to creatives who want to do it right and provides an opportunity to hear from subject matter experts as well as others who are on the same path.

8:30 – 10:00   “Choosing the Right Business Structure” Considerations for choosing the Right Legal Structure for Your Business and Getting Starting in South Dakota:  Tim Loftesness, SCORE Volunteer/Mentor

10:30 – 12:00 Pricing Creative Work for the Long Haul: Kara Dirkson, Appraiser/Consultant – Alla Prima Art Services

1:00 – 2:30  Baseline Legal Considerations:  Contracts, Intellectual Property, and Attribution Rights:Alex M. Hagen, Attorney –  Cadwell Sanford Deibert & Garry LLP

3:00 – 4:30  Accounting, Managing Money and Record Keeping: Claudia Dail, President/Founder, The Watering Can

All the sessions are presented in a casual way with focus on information yet allowing time to share with and learn from others. Everyone is on a unique path and there are various ways to make progress.  One of the goals is to create community so there are ongoing resources to continue the learning and have a support network.  Coffee and check in at 8:00am at the Sioux Falls Arts Council office 326 E 8th St, Sioux Falls, SD 57103.

The fee for the full day of all four sessions is $50.00 or one session $25.00. For more information regarding the sessions email info@thewateringcan.orgor call 605-271-2904.

To register: Nuts & Bolts Registration

The Watering Can     www.thewateringcan.org   FB:@thewateringcansf    info@thewateringcan.org

Youngers Studio Tuesday Night Drawing Group Resumes

Tuesday Night Drawing Group resumes this week!
Tues, Oct 2nd– Nude figure pose, Ann will be our model
6:30-9:00pm
$12
Send a reply or call/text if you plan to attend 🙂

Looking forward to seeing you all again!
 
—————————————
– OCTOBER SCHEDULE –
10/2 – Nude Figure (Ann)
10/9 – Portrait/Costume
10/16 – Nude Figure (Marcus)
10/23 – Nude Figure (Monica)
10/30 – Nude Figure (Monica)
ANNA YOUNGERS FINE ART
335 N. Main Ave. Ste. 210
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
605.929.5016
www.annayoungers.com
anna@annayoungers.com

FULL CIRCLE BOOK CO-OP TO OPEN SHOP NOVEMBER 2

After a diligent year and a half, Sion Lidster and Jason Kurtz of Full Circle Book Co-op will open their official brick-and-mortar location in Sioux Falls. A creative space for local artists of all ages and trades, FCBC is sure to be a springboard for countless local projects and ideas. We are so excited for our brothers in grassroots art advocacy. Congratulations and welcome to downtown!   – Tana

Tana: Tell us a little about the Full Circle Book Co-op. What is it? How did the idea come about?

Sion Lidster: In its most basic form, the FCBC is a creative hub – based around a used books shop, events space and beer/wine/coffee/conversation bar – that serves affordable food!

The idea is to create a place where artists and fans of the arts can come to hang out, talk, work and meet each other. I hope that it will help inspire artistic projects and ideas.

A physical space is important in artistic movements, and I believe that service to the arts goes far beyond the artists themselves. It becomes the duty of businesses to afford artists their lifestyle, if they do indeed support that community. This means low prices and open arms. It means a meal that won’t break the bank, a full coffee cup, a round of beer and merriment. We want to feed the arts, literally!

The idea came about in order to solve a problem we were facing. Me and my friend and business partner, Jason Kurtz, both run literary non-profits, and we were struggling to find all age venues to host our events that didn’t cost more than we could afford. We decided to work together to create a space that would not only provide this, but would hopefully become an inspiring home for all artists looking for one. The co-op idea came about because we want to encourage community, but want to make it clear that you do not have to be a member to shop with us – our membership program provides additional benefits.

After a year and a half of pop-up shops and events around the community, you guys have secured a physical location. Was that always the goal? What has been the process? Where will it be located?

It was always the goal to have a physical location. In fact, we were quick to announce that the space was coming last summer before we hit some road bumps (we are artists and optimists first)! Those road bumps taught us some valuable lessons that we are now bringing to our new location. Funnily enough, the location we have now was actually the first place we ever wanted to lease – so, full circle it is!

We will be located at 123 W 10thSt, Downtown Sioux Falls (the former Hydra building).

What’s your vision for the space?

You will walk through the door to an eye full of books and histories. You will walk on and find someone writing in a notebook. There may be a passionate conversation at the bar. There’ll be poetry on the walls. There will be an artist selling their wares in a booth. A non-profit will be holding a meeting in our scriptorium. You’ll look at a menu of delicious, shareable meals. Depending on the day, you may be treated to open mic poetry, live jazz, stand-up comedy, independent theatre, figure drawing, or a zine-making workshop.

A place where you are going to come and find a surprise – whether that is a book that you never knew you wanted, a painting you’ve never seen, or a person you’ve never met. A community meeting point, open and welcoming to all.

You launched a Kickstarter to raise funds toward initial expenses. Can you give us some of those details?

Yes, we have a Kickstarter running until Thursday, October 18th. We are asking for $10,000 dollars to cover initial start-up costs, such as inventory, kitchen equipment, building improvements/maintenance, licenses, and the Kickstarter costs themselves.

We are offering a number of rewards for your donations, from gift certificates to swag bags to lifetime memberships, and more! More info here.

For those who might not be able to help monetarily, what are some other ways they can offer support?

Being a grassroots effort, there are many ways to support us that does not require your money. Sharing our posts. Inviting people to our events on social media. Interviewing us. Holding events with us. Word of mouth. Handing out fliers. Volunteering. Donating books.

Currently, $100 (100 points), a donation of 100 books (100 points), or volunteering 20 hours (5 points an hour), or a combination, will get you a year’s rolling membership. These are real physical ways to keep the doors open.

You are for the community by the community. What are some ways the community can get involved once your space is up and running?

Absolutely.

The easiest way to get involved is to just simply ‘turn up.’ Come and buy our books, drink our coffee, join us for happy hour. Come and eat with us, break bread, share your news. Be a part of what this could be. The dream is to make this a living space, something memorable. We cannot, and don’t want to, do it without you.

If you want to hold an event, get in touch with us. If you have a non-profit and need a meeting space, get in touch with us. Consider us for your birthday parties, holiday parties, fundraising parties…
Come and perform with us, share your poetry, your acting, your painting. Bring us your books and prints to sell on the shelves…
Come to our classes, become members, bring a friend…
Create with us…

When will you officially open?

The official opening date is Friday, November 2nd. There will be a weekend full of festivities!

What kind of events will you host?

Open mic poetry, independent theatre, writing courses, TED-X style presentations, game nights, pub quiz, figure drawing, independent cinema, first page reads, writing critiques, cultural celebrations, salon-style conversations, live comedy, live podcasting, book clubs and book explorations, artistic happy hours, acting classes, photography classes, journaling classes, jazz brunch… and more!
We have many lists!

Even though you are a book co-op, like you said you are a creative space, and will have opportunities for a ray of artists. What kind of opportunities will you have available to visual artists?

When I speak of artists I speak of all mediums –  written, visual, and beyond.

We want a space that is dedicated to a featured monthly visual artist. Somewhere where, instead of merely hosting work as a backdrop to our shop, we are working with the artist as part of an idea, an installation, for them to get the best of their work.

We are also going to have a space to sell prints, as well as a booth that can be hired at any time during our opening hours for people to sell their work (not specific to visual, but totally included.)

How can they reach out to you to get involved?

The easiest and quickest way is by liking and messaging us on Facebook, where Jason will get back to you quickly.

What is the best way to keep in the know? Newsletter sign-up, Facebook?

Join up to our newsletter (fullcirclebookcoop.com)
Like us on Facebook/Instagram (@fullcirclebookcoop)
Donate to Kickstarter

How do you see things a year from now?

Looking back on one hell of an experiment, hopefully with a full house of poets and artists to celebrate with us!

Any other pertinent details I might be missing? 

I think this covered the wider, more in-depth bases really well. Got to cover ground that our ‘elevator pitch’ doesn’t scratch, so thank you very much for the questions!!!

Make sure to mark your calendars for November 2!