Detroit
Cultural
Crisis

a Survey
photo by Carlos Diaz
 
 
 
  • 36

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Inability to connect with people physically…..but I social distance walk with several……learning to be more creative with this quiet time and cobbling it down to what’s really important.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I,Ê personally, am still able to connect with 2-3 other meet-ups a week thru teleconferencing and Zoom…..being retired, I don’t have a work challenge. Ê The rest of my quiet time has been enjoyed immensely with extra reading, writing, food preparation and trying new recipes/foods, and simplifying the archives and collections I have to clear out spaces in my home and my head.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Grateful to have a pension and being a “saver” by nature and living with a husband who is even more of a “saver” than I am, (past, present and future)

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I consider social contacts a major part of my “culture” and am grateful to technology (computers, facebook, telephones, snail mail, and more) to keep me connected, which I do daily with many…….grateful, also, for many artistic and musical friends who have shared links to virtual art, music, dance, etc.

    ——

    Name: Pam
    Age: 77
    Occupation: Retired City Administrative Asst

  • 37

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: As a dancer, I’m a member of a couple of companies that gather to rehearsal several times a week and we perform for audiences. All of this has been canceled. All rehearsals and shows have been canceled. I’ve been creating solo dance videos every Monday. My company, CathyAndCompany, will stay together and we will probably start creating a weekly company class to share with the dance community.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I’m completely out of work & my side hustles are canceled too. The first gig that got canceled, I paid the company dancers (we were in route when it got canceled). I’ve lost income from 3 shows so far. I don’t think I’ll be able to monetize anything online.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture unites, entertains, and educates. Engaging in culture can help with mental health, increase a sense of well being (as much as one can right now), and help people feel connected to others.

    ——

    Name: Cathy
    Age: 49
    Occupation: I’m staying at home. Pretty much everything I would normally engage in has been canceled.

  • 35

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Been on medical for a month, spouse in hospital for 8 days, recovering at home.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Ground to a halt.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Spouse laid off work.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Critical all the time, especially in crisis.

    ——

    Name: Mark
    Age: 53
    Occupation: Labor Relations Specialist

  • 34

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: More time spent indoors, more flexible work hours, crafty projects, house cleaning

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Has actually been a (ironic) godsend for my practice. Increased time indoors and with myself has created the friction necessary to get my art going again.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Prefer not to respond

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: If, by culture, you mean art and creativity – I feel it is the thing we often turn to when we have nothing else (i.e. proximity, family, jobs, etc.). If, by culture, you mean your local community -then it becomes our role to sustain one; even if it’s through small gestures like waving hello or visiting a friend using a 6 foot measuring stick. As cliche as it sounds, we gotta stay together, even when we’re apart.

    ——

    Name: Juju
    Age: 27
    Occupation: Designer

  • 33

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: My pre-schooler is home, rather than being in school (which was M-F, 8-3). My partner is still working full-time hours, though thankfully from home. I am primary parenter during weekdays. My 4 month old baby would have been in childwatch at the YMCA, while I was swimming in the pool, for exercise and stress release. We would be getting baby-sitters occasionally so my partner and I can have ‘dates’ or ‘romance’ what-have-you outside of our home.

    Our extended families are mostly on the east coast; we are worried about their exposures and the shortages/negative mentalities in their communities, particularly in Pennsylvania and Brooklyn.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: As a farmer I am also an observer/thinker. I had already designated 2020 as a sabbatical year, so I am not thrown for a loop in terms of loss of structure, as many are.

    I am so busy parenting that I long for time for my practice. Though, it is right outside my house so getting everyone taken care of so that I can get out there is my driving force much of the time.

    I have a wonderful office to myself, off the kitchen, where I spend a lot of time writing, painting, thinking, and marking the time.

    I know that our lives will be altered in this dramatic way for many months to come, and I am finding ease in knowing that eventually I will have the time to move more deeply into my practices, and I look forward to that sinking/immersing as it comes.

    I look forward to the late summer, when we may have a respite from some aspects of the isolation. I am planning my hot seed plantings in reference to this anticipation… building on my sunflower forest from 2019, I will be continuing to plant towards an immersive destination of some sort, potentially from solstice to sukkot.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: The desire to divest ourselves of a share of our ill-gotten economic gains, as whyte ppl, has become more urgent. My partner is our primary wage earner. He received a 10% wage reduction from his employer but his long-term earning ability remains reliable. We gave a grouping of direct monetary sharing (‘gifts’) to approx 5 detroiter friends, and try to give generously from farm resources when asked. We must adjust our 12-month projections to include having elder members of our family join us… from 1-5 persons, potentially.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Detroit culture is saving my life, constantly. The survival, love, and interdependent leadership of Detroit’s Black community, particularly the black and brown urban agriculture community, is a blessing to us all.

    The role of culture in a crisis can be to ground you, to offer threads of thought and nets of safety to catch on to, when you look for them.

    Detroit liberatory culture seems to me (as someone who grew up in northeast US and lives here for approx 10 years) to often be about manifesting, nurturing, living within, finding your way to… cultural structures that serve the needs of the community. They are often built aside from ‘conventional political power structures’. It is not the duty of oppressed people to uphold the institutions that oppress them.

    ——

    Name: S M P
    Age: 36
    Occupation: farmer / parent of young children

  • 32

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I lost most of my work. Though I am blessed in my health and the health of my immediate family, with a wave of global grief and uncertainty about how long this will go on and what life will look like on the other side of it, it is a constant struggle not to feel overwhelmed and panicked.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Constantly preoccupied by what’s going on, it’s very difficult to focus on my craft. Despite the abundance of time, I’m writing little.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: My income is about a third of what it was in February. As a teacher, this is typically my busy season. I will likely be making very little until the fall, depending on if schools reopen and social distancing is relaxed.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Recognizing each other in a time where our ways of connecting and gathering are restricted. Finding beauty.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 34
    Occupation: writer and teaching artist (contracted)

  • 31

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I’ve been laid off indefinitely from most of my jobs as a freelancer. My last job has a deadline. The first week was really hard. Then I felt as if I caught my stride but even that has slowed. It’s becoming slower and I can see my goals prolonging and diminishing.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My jobs hav been put on hold.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: My income as stopped all together

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I don’t seem to know

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 25
    Occupation: Designer

  • 30

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Still able to work but haven’t seen a human outside of work in 1.5 months. While I am usually very introverted you don’t realize how much basic human connection you’re missing until you have no choice but to miss it

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Mental blocks. Caged in

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: The most important. But not always the easiest space to cultivate in

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 29

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: It has cut off my future. Normally my job as a tour producer is about planning all of the details of travel, and booking classes, but no one knows what will be possible and when. Normally deposits are coming in for the next tours. Normally I know how much time I have before the next tour. Otherwise, as I am between my winter and summer tours I would be working on writing projects right now and working from my home office. So with the exception of not having a world outside, not much has changed in that part of my life.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: In terms of writing, I find it difficult to focus on work, which is unusual for me. I would much rather be coming up with creative solutions to our current situation. The project that I have before me seems like it is from another world that has passed away.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: My summer tour, which is about half of my income for the year, is in jeopardy. I’ve had added expenses related to travel changes from the last tour, and nothing is coming in right now.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: A lot of people who are adverse to the idea of providing for artists in any stimulus packages could not imagine spending their time in lockdown with no books, music or streaming movies. Performers will be some of the last to get their livelihoods back and yet they are some of the most generous in streaming free content to make people feel connected in this time.

    ——

    Name: Laura
    Age: 50
    Occupation: Writer/Ballet Master Class Tour Producer

  • 28

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: exercise

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: remote teaching

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: less monet spent on gas

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: assessment and critique

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 66
    Occupation: professor

  • 27

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: My family and I have been affected in every way – from the way we eat (no more going out), the way we are able to use public entertainment (no more community events like movies, concerts, live theater, art museums), to the way to we visit the doctor (virtual, or in person with masks and gloves), to the inability to have necessary/critical surgery (cannot), to seeing extended family (cannot), to having grandchildren visit (cannot), to shopping (with masks and gloves, observing social distance, and going infrequently), to seeing friends (cannot), to virtual communication (good but not the same), to picking up the mail out of our mailbox (protocols!), to walking down our street (masks again and social distance!), to protection of someone in our home with underlying health conditions . . . the list is endless. Nothing is not affected. Except: in everyday life, I am learning to re-prioritize, to emphasize the truly important over the trivial.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My work involves professional meetings – all of which have gone virtual and which have decreased somewhat. I do not like the program of choice (ZOOM) and have learned to accommodate that within certain protocols and barriers. I do not allow the video feature, for instance. Still, my work remains necessary (recording secretary for professional/municipal meetings) and at this moment seems secure.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Because I am retired with a true pension (!), social security, and ongoing part-time self-employment work, I have not been too affected economically, even though my self-employment income has decreased somewhat.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture has been very important to me during the COVID-19 shut down. I appreciate the free online streaming of plays, operas, and so on. I MISS being able to attend things in person, but I am grateful for the ability to participate virtually in events that I might not be able to see otherwise (National Theatre performances, Met Opera, etc.), and I appreciate my online subscriptions to newspapers (Free Press, Washington Post, NY Times) as well as other ways to read news articles online. I find the press is HUGE in keeping community culture going. I am a sometimes published writer; however, I have found it impossible to write during this time – I know other artists and writers who are having this same difficulty. But culture – whatever our art form or even basic forms of communication – is a critical mirror to what is happening right now, the changes that are happening right now. I appreciate all those who create, communicate, and reach me via my devices. Cultural communication pulls me outside of myself, and helps me refocus and recenter, so I can keep going for another day.

    ——

    Name: Cheryl M
    Age: 68
    Occupation: Retired with part time self-employment

  • 26

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Besides being physically cut off from the world, life has almost grinded to a halt. I’ve learned that the stimulation that one finds from going out, from seeing and hearing other people, is more reinvigorating that I ever understood. It has made me reconsider my previously reclusive lifestyle. What I’ve found most reassuring was this renewed sense of comraderie online. Social media was usually an alienating experience but now it’s a place of shared humanity working through a crisis.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: The reclusive nature of creating art is unchanged by the virus. You find people considering art not essential during times of economic hardship.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture is always in a state of flux but it seems during a crisis it always takes on a more contemplative form.

    ——

    Name: Dionne
    Age: 32
    Occupation: Intern

  • 25

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: The ripples reverberate becoming bigger waves. My mind is more alert & in tune with the global consciousness. Though apart, I feel connected with my “species” & pact of fellow humans. I am anxious for positive change. My inner self thirsts for cleansing & I know this great pause is a gift, a beckoning that comes with reckoning. I do have fear too, a fear for responsibility that comes with understanding. I fear for others with fragile hearts and minds, and for the physical weak, and those on the front lines. The road feels narrow, like as walking across a high wire 937 stories in the air, and I’m wavering between fear and peace.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I don’t leave the house much, but I’m brewing in my thoughts and creativity. I am charged and there isn’t enough time to do it all. I should probably be working on it now… well I guess I am. The writing helps. I’ve been moved by poetry, especially Kate Tempest. I finally know what this installation that I’ve been envisioning means. And I’m stoked to get it on. The negs: teaching an online class asks for way more energy, my bench jeweler job was put on pause for a time.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Yes, I’ve lost a lot, my people are hurting and I’ve shared to aid as I can. I see that a valuable and honorable job is a job that is essential for our wellbeing.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Some may think that art and culture is frivolous, but I know my duty as a creative is now more important than ever, to communicate the climate of this season, to be a voice of reason among the chaos, to stir a change in hearts & minds, to help people navigate in a compassionate & healing direction. Culture becomes illuminated, well lit in the dark.

    ——

    Name: Holly
    Age: 31
    Occupation: Adjunct, Bench Jeweler

  • 24

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Thus far it has meant working my teaching job from home through on-line portals which is a poor way to interact with students. The most pressing impact has been trying to help my students manage the stress and disappointment of losing their studios, degree show, and graduation ceremony while also trying to get them to adapt to an unprecedented situation and find ways to manage their frustration and think critically about the situation. Helping them is exhausting and overwhelming.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Upcoming solo and group shows are in question now. I was preparing for a major solo show in November and now I continue making the work but cannot work with the framer and photographer to get the work finished and documented. It is also harder to maintain focus on the work because I am working through issues with my students and trying to manage my own compulsion to listen to the news all the time or hide from it.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: So far, my main income is safe, but my employer is small and the repercussions of this may have a drastic effect on its future. I had a sale of my work that started just before this seems to be in jeopardy.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: To provide critical response to power, and injustice. To provide an avenue for people to consider and experience moments of joy, sadness, celebration and mourning. As an outlet / expression of new ideas, moments of “beauty”, and to build communities around those things.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 56
    Occupation: Artist & College professor

  • 23

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I am most affected by not being able to interact with others.
    It is unsettling to not be able to visit with my parents or friends.
    It has caused me to invest much time into rebuilding how I approach teaching art.
    It has resulted in a structure of walking outside everyday from 10am to 11am.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I am still able to work in the studio.
    With so many projects to work on, I cannot relate to those who claim to feel bored during this pandemic.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: While some teaching work has transitioned to online emails or FaceTime appointments, other work has been altogether cancelled. Scheduled workshops and tours are lost income.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture functions to reflect the circumstances of our times.
    Culture’s fruit can serve to support people in various ways and can reveal new understandings of the world around us.

    ——

    Name: RRZ
    Age: 42
    Occupation: Artist / Educator

  • 22

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Increased financial uncertainty, intensity of 24/7 childcare for two babes under 3 during shelter-in-place order

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Childcare trumps practice

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Increased uncertainty about whether employment will continue

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: A balm, a lifeline, a necessary and visceral reminder of interconnection.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 42
    Occupation: poet, professor, doula

  • 21

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Now working from home. Deep limitations to my collaborations. Nearly all of my performances were cancelled.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My practice is largely based on collaboration, so much of my practice was eliminated. However, it give me time to work on my chops, read, experiment and study.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: I have a day job that allows me to work from home. So far, minimal. But income from my performances is shot.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I think we can use crisis as an opportunity to be reflective. It can avail us to other ways of thinking when we get too steeped in our craft. For example, as a musician, I’ve turned to watching films and reading books more. This can help to shape my art in different ways. In short, we still need culture to remind ourselves of the humanity of which we’ve been robbed.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 50
    Occupation: Manager

  • 20

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I can’t pursue my favorite pastime or go to see my doctor

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A:

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Not too much. If I could spend more, it might have made a bigger difference.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I don’t know what this means in this context

    ——

    Name: Ken
    Age: 80
    Occupation: Retired

  • 19

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I recently complained that I had no more “daydreaming time” as I did when I was a freelance artist. Now I have plenty. I’m attempting to tap into my mystical in this spaciousness.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I don’t enjoy online teaching, but I have had good results. Since I’m in the theatre… where is the audience… I love the live experience. The in the room together experience. Ahhh.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Seeking beauty for our nervous systems, we’ll read, watch a film, listen to music, walk amongst the trees. I’ve reached for all of the above for solace and distraction.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 18

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Very early on in my life, in order to find the gumption to leave the house, I’ve had to say, “I might get got today so let’s get it back.” Absurd or reckless death is a given for a Flint kid, even before they (the government & Nestle corporate interest) poisoned our water. I feel in my element, like I no longer have to tone down or pass for someone who doesn’t fully understand the impermanence & importance of every move we make. Furiosa who takes more conference calls & doesn’t have contact with students, whose safety was just as compromised by someone stepping on the elevator before all this as it is now.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I was doing great for about a week & then took on a load of lesson plans & remote work. For that week having labor-equals-worth guilt off the table was a tremendous help. It used to be every time I sat down to really hone my craft or explore my internal artistic connections I would make myself sick thinking how taking time away from earning a paycheck means I’m that much closer to living in my car again. That isn’t to say that my personal craft has nothing to do with community, I feel like it’s my responsibility as an artist to help people make space for themselves to create. It’s just that before the first week of April 2020, I had never EVER felt myself make space for myself to create. Pandemic made it so that I had no choice but to live in my own space taking care of my own mind first.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: I’ve always been in poor & in crisis so like if you need tips please @ me, but only on FB bc I don’t have other social media.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I want to emphasize that when I say ‘crisis’ I mean it as lifelong phenomena that I have observed & experienced: Flint has not had clean water since 2014, tens of thousands of households in Detroit lost access to water in 2014 & many still do not have access even in a pandemic, my students have empty lots for legal addresses, do not have regular access to food, come to school fearing gun violence & some still feel safer at school than at home, people my age in Detroit grew up in a food desert, I personally have never had an apartment in Detroit that wasn’t operated by a shady property business or an outright slumlord, in Detroit the idea of generational wealth is a joke, not protection. In this beautiful Black city, medical negligence, racist policing, state/city sponsored economic terrorism all kill residents for being Black or Brown. & then we have a pandemic. On average, “pandemic” might be fourth or fifth on the list of things that will try to kill you on any given pandemic day. I have lived through & been witness to enough physical, political, & cultural violence to tell you that there has always been a crisis, & it has always been the role of the artist to wake up every morning & say, “I hope I can make a world where no one has to die today.”

    ——

    Name: Catharine Batsios
    Age: 33
    Occupation: Teaching Artist, Misc.

  • 17

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I’ve felt the strain of loneliness due to social distancing and isolation. I tend to show my love and affection, in friendships as well as familial and romantic relationships, physically. The lack of touch is something that I’m sure many are feeling and it’s going to take some time to find effective ways to connect for people who rely on physical affection.

    This is one of those times where the effort afforded to sowing the seeds of friendship and putting a focus on the quality of your connections rather than the quantity can really benefit not just you, but also those you hold dear. Marcus Tullius Cicero said “Friendship improves happiness, and abates misery, by doubling our joys, and dividing our grief.”

    There have been a number of old friends who have reached out to me since the start of this, some just to check in, others who simply know that I prepare for events such as these and stay as educated as I can on matters of public interest. I’ll come out of this with renewed friendships, and the knowledge of that plays a huge part in my ability to stay positive and optimistic.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Being an “Essential Worker” is an interesting position. I’d much rather be able to quarantine and limit my exposure and the exposure I present to those around me, but that simply isn’t an option or reality for me. I also sympathize with those who would prefer to be working but have lost their livelihood and are feeling abandoned or under-served in our society. As many of us feel, our nations government could have, and should have, been in a position to better serve us in this disaster. My day to day responsibilities have lessened but are still essentially the same, with an added focus on looking out for the health and safety of my fellow workers, and clients.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: My income has stayed the same, but my roommate was laid off from her job as a server, so we’re operating primarily on my income. I have made an effort to avoid larger retailers whenever possible and instead make my purchases exclusively from small businesses. I’ve set aside money that I typically would have spent going out or socializing and instead use it to support friends and makers who create art or goods. I’ll continue to focus on this even after life regains normalcy.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture is instrumental in our ability to connect during these trying times. Culture adapts and evolves as events like this occur and gives us an outlet to share all of our thoughts, feelings and experiences. Staying involved helps us all feel less alone, helps us feel heard, and helps us cope in this strange new reality.

    ——

    Name: Nicholas
    Age: 32
    Occupation: Essential Worker (Public Safety)

  • 16

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I am sheltering in place, everyday is the same. It is lonely and liberative. I have lost my job so I am in a monotonous hamster wheel of consuming information on the job market, COVID-19 Fund Relief.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I am largely uninspired with a couple sparks of life igniting important moments.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: My partner and I were both laid off permanently so I have no income other than hopefully unemployment.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: ever unfolding, holding space for multitudes of different capacity levels, new pathways for more voices from underrepresented communities, coexisting joy and grief

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 32
    Occupation: Arts Administrator, Writer, Community Organizer

  • 15

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Much of my time is spent in the studio, but with the coming of spring, my studio extends to the town around me. I don’t know how or if that process will happen this season.
    When painting outside I do not encourage much dialogue, but some interaction is inevitable. It does have an impact in the paintings; that is ultimately about community translated into form.
    I am imbedding in the transition of the season. The weather is not predictable, nor is the community. It is precisely the right time to asses the interaction of space, form and community , in a time of stress for all these elements.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My practice is about the intersection of community-space-and form. That intersection is being stressed during this time. It is my hope that this stress will be considered within the work. It is a compelling time to be working with these issues.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: I live modestly, and now more modestly than ever. So far I have been able to buy the paint and equipment I need.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture is a major component of my assessment of Community. It is what matters and what will guide me through this.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: Painter

  • 14

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Much of my time is spent in the studio, but with the coming of spring, my studio extends to the town around me. I don’t know how or if that process will happen this season.
    When painting outside I do not encourage much dialogue, but some interaction is inevitable. It does have an impact in the paintings; that is ultimately about community translated into form.
    I am imbedding in the transition of the season. The weather is not predictable, nor is the community. It is precisely the right time to asses the interaction of space, form and community , in a time of stress for all these elements.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My practice is about the intersection of community-space-and form. That intersection is being stressed during this time. It is my hope that this stress will be considered within the work. It is a compelling time to be working with these issues.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: I live modestly, and now more modestly than ever. So far I have been able to buy the paint and equipment I need.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture is a major component of my assessment of Community. It is what matters and what will guide me through this.

    ——

    Name: nancy flanagan
    Age: over 60
    Occupation: Painter

  • 13

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I am fortunate in that I can pursue many of my volunteer activities online. I now spend almost all time at home, except for jogging, walking, bike-riding, and grocery-shopping.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: It’s made me consider new ways to do my work, new ways to reach out to people.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: I’m on a fixed income. Ordinarily, that would be a problem, but now I’m grateful for the security of this safety net.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: I think culture’s role is to encourage us to think in purposeful new ways about the conditions responsible for the crisis: glaring economic and social inequities, racism, the injustice of artificial barriers, environmental collapse and climate change, the absence of comprehensive public health policy….

    ——

    Name: 
    Age: 69
    Occupation: retired

  • 12

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A:

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My business, TravelArt Services is a service business that is categorized as non-essential. Art exhibitions are not being installed or de-installed. As an artist, I can work in my studio and that has not changed. Making art is primarily done in isolation.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: No money coming in for work done for clients, galleries or museums.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture has the ability to focus on what is happening in the lives of individuals and community. It can express what & who we were, what we have been through and where we are going.

    ——

    Name: Valerie Parks
    Age: 73
    Occupation: Business Owner – TravelArt Services & Artist

  • 11

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I work from home. I’m lucky and grateful. I’m feeling like I’m getting depressed without interacting with humans in person.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I’m super lazy these days.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A: Trying to sell my house in LA right as this started. Extra costs I was not hoping to have. But also saving by not going out.

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Friends are important. Culture? I’m not sure.

    ——

    Name: Jody Belliveau
    Age: 47
    Occupation: Technology product owner

  • 10

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: The exhibition that was to be my largest source of income in the first half of the year has been postponed indefinitely. I have been promised that I will be paid for (curatorial) work done to date, but nothing as yet. In the interim, I have some grant funded projects that I can work on to provide some income. I’m guessing that my income will probably drop by 30-50% this year.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: It has definitely given me a great sense of urgency to start new projects and to re-start old ones. I find that there are not enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do.

    When it was clear that everything was closing down, my immediate reaction was think what projects I could ramp up, or begin. It’s a tiny part of the art economy, but it is good to be able to keep small checks going out to writers, editors, curators, etc.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: One role that culture has in times like these is to keep people connected, communicating, and working together. We know that the (neoliberal) right uses crisis as an opportunity to impose austerity measures on society’s most vulnerable members, and also as an opportunity to remove environmental protections. This crisis may be particularly bad for that because of the increased social isolation. so this role is going to be especially important.

    I also think that culture allows people to conceptualize, experiment with ideas, and reflect on what’s happening. These are all critical to using this time as a learning experience.

    Then the creation and consumption of culture is a tremendous source of comfort to a lot of people, and that is not inconsiderable.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 9

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: My classes were cancelled

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I have not been able to teach and interact with students and further my career

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Propaganda

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 8

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I am fortunate in that the crisis has not affected me economically. I initially feared losing my day job at a small business outside of the arts/culture sector, but my employer has made it a priority to ride out the crisis w/employees intact and I am able to work from home.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Created a little more space for it

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: To provide relief for weary/traumatized minds and bodies, to transcend self, time, space, and circumstance.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 7

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: cancelled show and speaking engagements, cancelled sales

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: not able to get some supplies

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: to help people process, provide an outlet, help people to connect, create safe space for stoy telling, healing

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 6

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: My husband is laid off. I am still working. I had to buy a new laptop so I could work from home.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: My practice as in my work? Well I am a social worker, it’s all I talk about now with people. How scared they are. They are so surprised at something that they can’t see is so frightening.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: The helpers are rushing in to help. The takers are all for themselves. The governors are doing what they can. The president is an awful man who the GOP left in charge to ruin us so that they could make money. He made a bad situation horrific.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 5

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: My mother is self employed and works in the cosmetology industry- she is out of work and we cannot afford the mortgage on our house.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I had to move my studio from school to home where I do not have access to the same equipment.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Comfort

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 4

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: On leave from work as there’s no one else available to be with my child while he’s home from school.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: ugh. experience feeds my practice. if i’m stuck inside experience is limited.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: culture is the raft that keeps us afloat during the storm (crisis)

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 3

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: Yes

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: Yes

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: To fall back on the wisdom of our elders and become aware AGAIN of the power of prayer, however you pray. -Ojibwe – Detroit MI

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 2

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: There has not been much of a change. What we lost in the physical world, we gained in the virtual world.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: We have focused all of our attention on our online capabilities to continue to provide quality content to everyone during these times.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: Culture reminds us that we are humans. We have gone through many things and together we can get through any crisis. Culture and art keeps the human spirit in us alive when the road gets roughest.

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: 

  • 1

    Q: How has the crisis affected your everyday life?

    A: I lost my job and am about to graduate into a jobless economy.

    Q: How has the crisis affected your practice?

    A: I’m paralyzed at the moment. What’s the point? How will I live? Etc.

    Q: How has the crisis affected you economically?

    A:

    Q: What is the role of culture in a time of crisis?

    A: It’s everything. It’s why we live in the first place. But as an undervalued, unpaid, underexposed artist graduating into a void with huge debt HOW can I continue?

    ——

    Name: 
    Age:
    Occupation: