At first glance, pairing artists and high tech entrepreneurs seems incongruent.
But to Laura Tyler, multimedia artist and founder of ARTology, there is much to gain by connecting these groups, particularly in light of the on-fire growth of Boulder’s start-up scene.
Founded in 2102 by Tyler and three other artists, ARTology produces events that explore the intersections between art, technology and culture. The goal is to get Boulder artists and entrepreneurs talking and connecting in order to learn from and support each other and enrich the community.
“There is room for growth in connecting the high tech creatives and artists. Artists either reflect back existing realities or challenge them,” notes Tyler.
One observation of the ARTology organizers is that Boulder’s thriving high tech start-up economy is contributing to the shift occurring in Boulder’s identity — going from laid back college town to entrepreneurial mecca.
The initiative just concluded its second event — a workshop entitled “Intro to Entrepreneurship for Artists and Creatives,” featuring Remy Arteaga, serial entrepreuener and author of Pivot: How Top Entrepreneurs Adapt and Change Course to Find Success.
Tyler, who organized and attended the workshop says, “The thing I found personally valuable was talking about failure in a pragmatic way, because as artists we often think of failure as a personal failure. Remy’s idea of failure is how to respond to changing circumstances. He’s all about gathering information and using that to determine your course.”
Though “curious about how the business world works and how some of those concepts can apply to artists,” Tyler doesn’t think they apply across the board.
Case in point is the start-up notion of market testing a product early and often during the development phase.
“Artists are often led by a vision, you can’t troubleshoot every body of work you are going to do before you make it….But at the same time when you are thinking about getting your work out in the world, connecting with as many people as possible, I think some business skills can be extremely beneficial,” Tyler says.
The first ARTology production was a series of panel discussions on art, identity and purpose.
The most well attended was ‘Purposeful Work,’ held at eTown Hall during Boulder’s Start-up Week when a panel of scientists, entrepreneurs and artists spoke to an audience of around 200.
When asked if there was commonality, Tyler responds, “There absolutely was. Especially with the entrepreneurial mindset, you’re basically wanting to create something from nothing so a lot of that is really similar.”
Tyler adds, “This is fascinating to me, entrepreneurs have this kind of loosey goosey approach to failure and crowdsourcing and working in groups. It’s very collaborative, get as much data as you can. The individual creator is less important. It’s more about teamwork.”
“Artists, I think, are still more personally invested in an individual vision,” Tyler notes.
What’s next for ARTology? A Call for Writers
Now Tyler aims to generate a dialogue with ARTology’s online presence through written pieces. If grant funding comes through, the plan is to commission pieces and she would love to talk with anyone interested. Tyler is seeking:
- Experienced high tech writers with a point of view about art and culture in Boulder to write about culture
- Artists who can write about technology and how that’s impacting them
- People in high tech writing about culture and connections and what it means to be a member of the Boulder community
Connect with Laura Tyler During Boulder Arts Week
To find out more, or see her work, visit:
Studio Open House
Friday, April 3, 6-9 pm
1650 Yellow Pine Ave, Boulder, CO