Visual Arts Program

Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 3:00 p.m.

Karen Finley

Artists Anonymous

Karen Finley - <em>Artists Anonymous</em>
Karen Finley - <em>Artists Anonymous</em>
Karen Finley - <em>Artists Anonymous</em>
Karen Finley - <em>Artists Anonymous</em>
Karen Finley - <em>Artists Anonymous</em>

Saturday, October 25 at 3:00 p.m. & Sunday, October 26 at 11:00 a.m.

Open and free to all artists; limited seating capacity (30 per session). Artists must pre-register for either the late Saturday afternoon OR late Sunday morning session. (RSVP to Coffee & other refreshments will be served.

Performance artist, visual artist, and writer Karen Finley's latest project (July-October 2014), Artists Anonymous, was conceived as a special participatory project of New York Makers: The MAD Biennial Exhibition of the Museum of Arts & Design (MAD)in NYC. This month, as a special event of Hallwalls' 40th-anniversary season, Karen is bringing the project to Buffalo for the benefit of Buffalo artists, sponsored by Hallwalls. Part Finley-esque satire, part sincere self-help session for artists addicted to making and consuming art, this new 13-step program has proven wildly popular in NYC. In recognition that far too much art is being created and presented in Buffalo these days (a vicious circle of addiction that Hallwalls is well aware of feeding and enabling), Hallwalls wanted to make sure help was on the way before the artists of Buffalo hit rock bottom and Buffalo ODs on art.

As in NYC, the two Buffalo sessions of AA—both conducted by AA-founder Karen Finley—will feature "guest artist speakers joining the meeting and offering testimonials of transformation." Saturday's guest artist testimonial will be offered by Shasti O'Leary Soudant; Sunday's guest artist will be A.J. Fries.

Here's the project as described on the MAD web site, including Karen Finley's 13 steps:

"Known for her performances, visual and conceptual works, New York-based artist Karen Finley has appropriated the self-help model of 12-step programs to create her new work, Artists Anonymous. Finley will host a series of meetings and outline her own 13-step course of action for recovery for the 'artistically afflicted.'

"…Artists Anonymous is conceived as a series of open meetings for artists who feel that their lives have been affected by art making, the art world, and the trials of maintaining a creative life and career. The meetings will offer the group a space to consider and reflect on challenges that artists encounter.

"Reimagining the 12-step program, each meeting will begin with a brief topic, prompt or creative exercise proposed by Karen Finley. A guest artist speaker will join each meeting and offer testimonials of transformation. Artists will be able to share, address the prompt, offer gratitude, or vocalize an issue that they are going through. Other exercises will be explored during these sessions. Artist Anonymous meetings are open to the public and free with Pay-What-You-Wish admission. Coffee and refreshments will be served.

"Do you have a problem with art? Do you need help with that problem? If so, Karen Finley and the Museum of Arts and Design [and now Hallwalls] are here for you."

Artists Anonymous 13 Steps

1. We Are Powerless Over Art
2. The Power Of Art Is Greater Than Ourselves
3. Turn Our Will And Our Lives Over To The Care Of Art
4. Admit We Are Artists
5. We Are Addicted To Art
6. Ready To Make More Art
7. Get Out Of The Way We Are Making Art
8. Whatever It Takes Make The Art
9. Art Is All Around Us. We Make Art Available To Others
10. Continue To Make Art Despite The Consequences
11. Give Of Ourselves With Our Art To Others Whether They Like It Or Not
12. Hope To Provide A Spiritual Awakening With Art And Maybe Some Cash
13. Life Is More Important Than Art But Life Is Meaningless Without Art

Remember, all addicted artists must pre-register for one of the two Buffalo sessions, with a maximum capacity of 30 at each.