An anthropological approach to art

July 12, 2011 8:53:41 AM PDT
It's an interesting approach to art. It's not the pieces of art themselves, but the space that houses them that's getting the attention.

They include a cart filled with pills collected over 20 years and drawers stocked with original and scanned images, and they are objects that Fred Tomaselli uses in his work, many of which are collages. But Sarah Trigg isn't at Fred's Brooklyn studio to photograph him or his work. She's more interested in his actual studio.

"Instead of looking at the final product, it's kind of looking at the things that are behind the scenes," she said. "The things that have been influencing their practice."

So she hones in on the details - the still lives of his space.

"I'm sort of obsessed with looking at how an artist approaches the world," Sarah said.

"There is a practice that comes out of the studio and out of the materials of the studio that people rarely look it," Tomaselli said. "They look at the finished objects. And so I think it's good to have another perspective on that."

Sarah has already shot 100 studios. She calls it the Goldminer Project. She's partnered with United States Artists, a non-for-profit that puts the public in touch with artists like Sarah, allowing them to pledge money to help them create their art.

At a time when grants for artists are few, this fundraising effort helps support Sarah, covering expenses for travel and supplies. Along the way, she sends postcards and calendars to her benefactors, tokens of her appreciation.

Sarah's artwork is for sale too, but for those who just want to foster an artist's career, donating is a good way to do so.

She's looking to raise $5,000, and she's nearly halfway there. Pledges are tax deductible, and some are even matched.

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