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April 30, 2018   |   By The New York Community Trust
Making a Living Making Art
ART COMMUNITY: Artists in a Creative Capital workshop share ideas and learn useful business skills.

ART COMMUNITY: Artists in a Creative Capital workshop share ideas and learn useful business skills.

Being an artist means running a small business—selling, budgeting, and financial planning. That’s why The Trust supports Creative Capital, a nonprofit that helps artists manage businesses and careers.

Media artist Ela Troyano received funding from the organization, but got much more. “Creative Capital doesn’t simply give money to artists,” Troyano says. “Their staff helped me set up a sustainable, lifelong art practice.”

Now, in addition to making art, Troyano runs Creative Capital workshops around the country. At a session in Miami a few years ago, she realized many other Spanish-speaking artists need help.

With $100,000 from The Trust, Creative Capital has started a program in Spanish for Latinx artists in the Bronx, Harlem, and the Lower East Side.

Troyano acknowledges that some painters, poets, and singers see business as antithetical to their art: “I tell artists that Jay Z had a business plan early on, selling cassette tapes on the street.”

Figuring out the business side allows artists to control the ideas, as well as the making and distribution of their work.

Learn more about our work to support the arts

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