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CoRK visits connect artists with collectors

May 10, 2016 // by Ben Thompson

Starting in early March, I began making weekly studio visits with artists at CoRK Arts District. Situated in an industrial area on the edge of Jacksonville's Riverside neighborhood, CoRK is nearly 100,000 square feet of artist-centered studio and gallery space located in a multi-building warehouse complex. The name CoRK is an acronym for the location itself: the Corner of Roselle and King Streets. The district currently features more than sixty working artist studio spaces representing a variety of media, including painting, sculpture, printmaking, photography, and performance art. The thriving community of artists has exceeded the expectations of its founders, developer Mac Easton and artist Dolf James. In the future, CoRK planners foresee adding a live music venue and performance art space.

CoRK Arts District Kedgar Volta PhotoJax Exhibition b
Kedgar Volta's work appears in Urban Impositions, curated by Ben Thompson, during PhotoJax at CoRK Arts District in 2014. Image courtesy of Doug Eng.

These visits have several goals:

  • To better familiarize my MOCA colleagues and me with what is happening in the regional art scene;
  • To offer commentary and critique in for those who might want it;
  • To assist with questions relating to professional and portfolio development;
  • To strengthen connections between MOCA Jacksonville, the Museum's stakeholders (members, collectors, out-of-town visitors, etc.), and artists;
  • To keep me current on creative happenings in our region;
  • And last but not least, to satisfy my love of spending time with artists and talking about their work.

Click on these links to read about my visits with these artists:

Amy Elizabeth Leggin

Jeffrey Luque

Marisa Yow

Look for reports about more studio visits in the future. 

Collectors' Series: The Accessible Artist

On May 11, MOCA hosts The Accessible Artist at CoRK, the second event of MOCA Jacksonville's 2016 Collectors' Series sponsored by the Florida Mining gallery for the Museum's premium members.

Collectors often ask MOCA's curatorial staff how they can locate artists, and artists want to know how they can connect with collectors. This exclusive event allows MOCA's patrons to explore and engage with local artists on a one-on-one basis (normally only accessible by appointment). Collectors might find artwork they simply cannot live without, and artists might form long-term relationships with collectors.

The evening begins with a reception in the gallery of CoRK's East building. MOCA staff members begin the evening with remarks and a brief introduction spotlighting a select number of artists. Following remarks, attendees are encouraged to tour the individual studios at their own pace, as MOCA staff facilitate access and artist introductions. Attendees are provided with a digital packet of information in advance which features information on all of the artists currently at CoRK as well as a map of their studio locations.

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