Reason #16: Artist and communal self-esteem are linked

Categories:Projects
Rob Vander Giessen-Reitsma

*cino needs YOU to vote each day in December to help us win a $50,000 grant to renovate the old kindergarten room at Huss School! Why vote? Read on…
Reason #16: When local artists are encouraged to take pride in their work, it contributes to the artist’s sense of self-esteem as well as the community’s positive recognition of its own unique character and value.
Young artists with gifts in music, painting, film and other forms tend to emigrate from rural and suburban areas into cities for a variety of reasons. Cities contain a wide range of possibilities for inspiration and collaboration. Neighborhoods within cities become known as places where artists gather. As a natural result, cities often flourish artistically while rural and suburban areas languish.
However, imagine what could happen if a small rural city committed intentionally to encouraging the gifts of young artists, involving them in works of public art, giving them opportunities to display their work and teaching them the skills they need to transform what they see in their community into compelling work to which audiences respond. In fact, this is already happening in Three Rivers, both for youth and adult artists. We hope the projects at Huss School will join this stream of community development to make it even stronger, bridging age and income gaps. Over time, we hope to change self-perceptions about our community, from a struggling Midwestern town that’s being gutted by industrial trends to a beautiful, thriving center of opportunity for all people with a creative collaborative vision. We want our artists and our city to have a strong sense of self-worth.