“Hold the Door Open” BIPOC Artist Fund

Posted by on Mar 25, 2020 in Blog | One Comment

What / Header / Invitation

All Art Monastery Programs are now priced “Pay What You Want” for BIPOC artists (Black, Indigenous or People of Color).

Why / Context / Principles

BIPOC artists and meditators are at the forefront of the process of cultural transformation that creates a more vibrant, loving world for ALL.

Because creative self-expression, spiritual practice, and caring community are universal human rights, when they are made more widely available, everyone benefits.

This is about reallocating resources towards deep nourishment for beautiful, badass individuals, as a part of broader collective healing.

How / Implementation / Logistics

On any and all of our Program Registrations, when it comes time to register and pay, we invite BIPOC artists to make any financial contribution that feels appropriate to your own money situation right now, welcoming “registration payments” right down to $0. If you would like financial support to help cover travel costs, please let us know. We’ll see what we can do.

White people: So many of us are longing for reconnection, yearning to serve the greater good, to respond skillfully, to be of benefit. Please consider participating in the “resource pooling” that makes this program possible. More info on supporting this program on our donations page.

Story / Positionality / Intention

We’ve got a good thing going: more than ten years of investigation into the interrelationship of spiritual practice, communal living, and artmaking have built a supportive container for personal transformation at the Art Monastery. Now our work is to hold the door open, to support the BIPOC artists who bear the systemic stressload of this country’s dis-ease. Artmaking and spiritual inquiry only fulfill their potential of nurturing culture-shift when shared in solidarity across gender, class and race.

We believe in (and practice!) resource-pooling as an alternative to the stranglehold of rugged individualism, scarcity mentality, and capitalist competition. Hence the sliding scale pricing on all our programs. But we also know that income inequality is not color blind; the US legacy of indigenous genocide, black slavery, and white supremacy continue to disfigure our communities.  

Our dream is for all Art Monastery programming to be offered as a Gift—and that’s a big leap for us to take. So far we have had to keep a price tag on joining our gatherings and residencies. 

But this year, we are taking this step towards removing that $barrier-to-entry$ for anyone self-identifying as Black, Indigenous, or PoC, to ensure that the economic impact of white supremacy does not dictate who can and can’t be an Artmonk. 

TO BE CLEAR / caveats / blindspots

We recognize that money is not the only obstacle to BIPOC Artists showing up in our programs. We recognize the emotional labor and personal risk it can take for People of the Global Majority to join a space where the community is predominantly white.

We are aware of the complications of a White settler-led organization taking up residence on the unceded sacred lands of the Ohlone and Coastal Miwok peoples. The Art Monastery has been slowly cultivating racial diversity, facilitating community dialog to directly address white supremacy, and celebrating difference, to counter the “we are all one” colorblind racism that shows up in so many would-be “spiritual communities”. 

In this ongoing process of shaking loose from capitalism and patriarchy, colonialism and white supremacy, we invite feedback from *everyone* who visits our community. We will always want to hear your voice. That said, let’s be clear: for BIPOC artists accepting Artmonk hospitality, we do *not* expect you to act as ambassadors of your own racial or cultural identity, or to work as an educator for others. Instead, we encourage you to get the most out of your time here on the land, to deepdive into your artmaking, and let our little utopian experiment be a detox from the default overculture out there. Let’s build a better world together. 

With any questions or comments, please email info@artmonastery.org

1 Comment

  1. Art Monastery Project Defend Black Lives - Art Monastery Project
    June 5, 2020

    […] an organization, all our programs are offered free for BIPOC community and we’re committed to amplifying Black voices on our social media […]

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