At The Brockton Collective we believe that artists, and their work have multifaceted value.
While the process of creating can accurately be described as a ‘labour of love’, we believe that the products of such labour add value to the intellectual and emotional dimensions of cultural, personal and subjective spaces.
The trope of ‘the starving artist’, has persisted – romanticized and unproblematized – for far too long. It is a fact that artists in Canada are dramatically underpaid.
The Brockton Collective seeks to challenge this trope, and the practices that support it by recognizing that artists deserve to be compensated for their work, make a living wage, and receive benefits, which are provided to skilled professionals in many other sectors.
The Brockton seeks to revolutionize the art industry, and become the first globally recognized commercial brand in art and art services.
“Revolutionize” is a word that we do not use unreflectively. Without taking for granted that art, for many of us is by nature, subversive, and challenges social institutions and structures that have the power to oppress and exploit (like capitalism, for instance), we do believe that there must be space to make a viable living by performing artistic labour. Monetization is not ‘selling out’.
We present four strategies for achieving our vision:
1.Establish a Brand, Culture and Collective of Artists: Brockton Collective
Well on our way in this respect, our community of artists plays a vital role in shaping what services and benefits we offer. The Brockton has been active since 2011, and continues to grow in terms of numbers, and strength. We are now one of the most diversified group of artists with over 330 members. This is a critical achievement, as it is the foundation of all future endeavours. This is instrumental in expanding our network to include new artists and business affiliates.
2. Establishing a Buyer Network: Online Store (bTrove), App (Artster) and Gallery Network
To enable interested buyers to access the artwork of Brockton members, we will set up the following: An online store, which will act as both a shopping cart system and an artist portfolio. Further, we will develop a mobile app that will cater to artists, galleries and buyers, which will function to connect all 3 groups.
3. Establish a B2B Operations: “Brockton Creative” and affiliate networks
The Brockton Collective will create revenue opportunities and to establish affiliations with studios and production facilities, to develop retailer affiliate programs and creative agencies.
We will look to provide our members with the appropriate infrastructure to leverage their creative talents by launching a creative agency, which will manage and generate leads to artists for commissioned work.
4. Establish a Media Company: “Brockton Media”
To ensure that members’ efforts are visible to each other, the greater art community and potential buyers, The Brockton will initiate a media company which will document our members’ relevant activities via an online magazine. Depending on the volume of material, and the needs of our readership, we make printed anthologies, highlighting the most prominent activities chronicled in the online magazine available on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis.
Notably, this media company has the potential to provide further employment opportunities for members who enjoy photography, videography and writing.
In brief, our plan is admittedly ambitious, but we believe in the talents, hard work and determination of our members. We also believe in the influence of art, and its ability to subvert and challenge our ideas of what is normal and acceptable; it is revolutionary.
As Margaret Mead taught us, “never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”