By Hannah Pratt, Membership Director
2017 has been such a busy year for ArtCan: name changes, new shows in wonderful new locations, and the launch of the of ArtCan membership scheme, “Friends of ArtCan.” The membership is split into four different tiers each with their own benefits and donation level.
Founding Friends is perhaps the most prestigious of the memberships we offer. It really gives members a real sense of exclusivity, as this group is limited to 20 members. Along with the various benefits including the ArtCan Friends newletter, studio visits and exclusive ArtCan Friends events — more on those below — there is a direct recognition of thanks from ArtCan: Founding Friends are mentioned in all exhibition literature and on our website. (There are still a few spots left in this exclusive tier!)
The Friends of ArtCan and the Global Friends of ArtCan can expect similar benefits from their membership, enjoying the same studio visits, Friends Of events, and private views without the direct recognition from the organisation. Global Friends of ArtCan is a membership specifically designed for those who are unable to visit our exhibitions or attend studio visits but still want to be a part of the ArtCan experience. All the digital benefits associated with the Friends of membership are provided to our Global Friends such as the newsletter, digital catalogues and lists of works. All of these digital benefits are realised to our members before anyone else.
The fourth and final membership tier we offer is something that is rather exciting and designed to help a new generation of artists enter into the art world: our Student Friend membership. For a very modest fee any budding artist wishing to become a Student Friend can expect workshops with our ArtCan artists, including: developing techniques to engaging with your local community; one-on-one artists sessions with our ArtCan artists; and opportunities to volunteer within any aspect of ArtCan from setting up a show, hanging, social media and networking, database experience, or even the membership. Student members can also expect an invite to any ArtCan private view.
Below are some further descriptions of three of the benefits that we believe are the most exciting.
A studio visit to one of our artist’s studios is a unique chance to talk to one of the ArtCan artists outside of the private view or exhibition setting. You will have a guided tour through not just the studio but also artist’s portfolio for a real, up-close view of how their practise has evolved and grown over time. There will be provision to bring a small group to these visits, and a small drinks reception will be provided. This is also a unique opportunity to buy art directly from the artist and forge a lasting relationship with them. As with any ArtCan event or exhibition, no commission of any kind will be charged upon the sale of any pieces of work. Charging no commission is an ideal that ArtCan and the artists within the organisation feel extremely passionate about. Studio visits are part of the Founding Friends and Friends of ArtCan memberships.
The Friends of ArtCan newsletter is sent monthly to our members and is an informal communication including all ArtCan news as well as in-depth looks at our artists. Each edition features one of our artists in order to widen their profile and show their talent and practise to a much larger audience. We continue the exclusivity aspect of our memberships in that Friends of ArtCan will receive the best news from the organiseation before anyone else. Also included in the e-news will be updates from ArtCan exhibitions, photographs of private views, and progress reports on how ArtCan is progressing within the art world.
Invitations to exclusive private views
Arguably the most important part of any exhibition is its private view, a chance for guests to talk to artists about their work and celebrate with everyone. All Friends of ArtCan can expect an invitation to attend an exclusive, Friends-only private view, held before anyone else see the show. This allows our members a first look at the show, meaning Friends have an opportunity to purchase any pieces before the show opens to the public. Any Friend of ArtCan can further invite up to three additional guests to attend any Friends of ArtCan event.