A conundrum exists with the artist who needs to be alone to think and create but needs the company of other artists as mentors and sounding boards. Personally I like solitude to think straight but I get very excited when I see an art colony and I saw one yesterday in the next town to where I am staying for the next three months. In Ingram Texas, a place has been restored, refurbished, what have you, for arts-sculptors, print-makers, watercolorists, oil painters to work, show their works, have workshops with visiting artists etc. The complex includes galleries, studios, an indoor and an outdoor live theatre and a place for gala events which used to be an old roller skating rink. It is called The Hill Country Arts Foundation. www.hcaf.com. It is right on the Guadalupe River. What a view! You don't have to go far for inspiration. Funny, right across the road is a replica of Stonehenge. I don't know if it is full size but it is BIG. Next to this art complex is the old route 27 before the bypass. It is a loop with the old stores and shops and houses when the town was built in the 1850s. Nothing like New England 1850s, I mean old Texan style. You could easily imagine a passel of Santa Gertrudis galloping down main street followed by yippin' cowboys or a lone rider moseying up to the rail to tie up his hoss. It's neat. They sell antiques there interspersed with art galleries now. If I lived here I would definitely get involved but there is an annual fee and I won't be here long enough to take full advantage of it.
I don't know if it is an actual fact but I've heard that if an old slum needs to be revitalized the city planners encourage artists to move in to set up studios and calm the area down. That is while it is still affordable. Then the people with two good incomes buy in to it and redo the old places and then they are out of reach of the artists. This has happened in Boston in the South End and is happening in Worcester, MA. AH, The fickle finger of Fate. Opinion?
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