Art needs space
Artists have no place to work. They have no place to rehearse, paint, move, sing or perform.
Broadway has been shuttered for 8 months; university art studios are empty, live performances cancelled. This has left 62 percent of artist without work. According to the Rand Institute "the vast majority of artists have likely lost some or all of their income."
At Artra, we are on a mission to enable artist of all mediums to find affordable space to create and share their work with the world.
How we got here
We'd been searching for weeks. The living room just wasn't going to cut it anymore. Like many young actors, we were sick of waiting for acting opportunities, so we decided to create the opportunity for ourselves and put on a two-man show. In a cramped New York City apartment, we hunched over out computer and began to look for rehearsal spaces.
The only problem was that we couldn't find the space to do it.
We tried rehearsing in the aforementioned apartment - impossible. We searched for a space on social media - not reliable. We looked at renting out designated rehearsal studios in Manhattan - expensive.
To our surprise, we realized there was no central place to search fo rehearsal or performance spaces. After digging through countless websites that dated back before the release of the iPhone, and surviving some rough negotiations on social media, we knew - there had to be a better way.
We turned to fellow artists and found that the problem was far more widespread than our two-man show.
When you make your own work, whether writing a play, composing a song, or choreographing a dance - finding a space to perform is a massive challenge. If you are lucky enough to find that space, odds are it will cost an arm and a leg to rent. And you need those arms and legs to paint, dance, or dramatically gesture to stage left.
Traditional ways of renting space directly from theaters or galleries are too expensive. For example, renting an off-Broadway theater can cost up to $25,000 a week. To find one, you have to sift through old websites, communicate back and forth, or do all of that just to schedule a phone call.
There are countless creative spaces collecting dust, Artra is here to do a little housekeeping. There never has been a better time or place to explore what the city has to offer artists.