Arts & Enterprise: In this area we will look at the virtues and drawback of pairing arts and enterprise. What is an entrepreneurial mindset? Is an entrepreneurial approach detrimental to the arts community? Can enterprise support the freedom to create or does it slowly corrode our character and slim content? We will discuss how arts organizations are using traditional models such as subscriptions in innovative ways as well as new social motivated business models such as Laurence Lessig’s hybrid entities and Henry Chesbrough’s open business models.

2015-16 Arts & Enterprise Fellows

Selected Readings


The most visible examples of arts enterprises often employ traditional business and labor models. These models can reproduce oppressive power dynamics that prevent artists from accessing resources and opportunities they need to build and sustain their careers. In other words, in the traditional arts model, the gatekeepers are not artists; how can artists hold their own keys?


We plan to interview and report out about a number of arts enterprise related case studies. In doing so, we hope to answer some of our key questions and delve into topics of interest. The project will combine research, active listening, and the creation of a creative, accessible resource for the arts community in the Bay Area. We hope to empower those who are seeking to become or further their endeavors as an artist entrepreneur.


Have resources or questions for us? Please email fellowship(at)emergingsf(dot)org and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. If you want to apply for the next Fellowship cohort, please sign up for our newsletter for updates  and upcoming deadlines.