Volunteer corps meets artistic collaboration
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Grin City Collective is a brand new approach to art and community. Combining the concept of an artist residency with that of a volunteer corps, it creates a dialogue-rich, socially-driven creative community for everyone. It seeks creatively-minded people interested in impacting a community through a variety of service projects. It seeks artists striving for a social context in which to place their art. It seeks non-artists committed to service work and looking for a space to explore their creative practice.
Grin City is a creative community that focuses on engagement with society and with each other. Built on a belief in interdisciplinary dialogue, Grin City brings together people from all walks of life to foster new types of creative thinking and social commitment. It transforms the traditional institution of “retreat” residencies. It transforms the way artists and social organizers approach creative ideas. It transforms the community.
It’s about creating and helping the community, so you don’t have to have a B.F.A or M.F.A in art to join Grin City Collective. You don’t have to have been in shows, or had anything published, or performed. What you need is an interest to learn, be creative, and most importantly impact a community.
Residents at Grin City live, work, and volunteer communally in and around Grinnell, Iowa. Residents are provided housing in a 125-year-old farm house and their own creative workspace in a converted tofu factory on the complex a ½ mile north of town. They perform between 5 and 20 hours of community service and outreach every week. Resident meals are made and eaten together.
The dedication to outreach sets Grin City Collective apart from other creative communities. Grin City doesn’t focus on arts-related service work, although it does incorporate it. Instead it uses creative approaches to answer a much larger community need for things from local foods to re-shingled roofs. Examples of outreach include farming our all-natural vegetable garden; teaching children’s art, music, or dance workshops; hosting a community free meal; or socializing with the home-bound elderly.
Up to eight people can be a part of Grin City Collective at any point in time. Residents may share rooms with one other roommate.
Contact: Molly Rideout