Every child is an artist. The problem is staying an artist when you grow up.
We, at WITNESS THIS, strive to support artists (be it photographers, painters, directors, DJs, Singer/Songwriters, etc.) and introduce you; the readers, our friends, our collaborators and our inspiration, to the other genius minds out there. We come across some of the most talented people, and while doing so, we found two inspiring young women who completely embody the idea of supporting artists and are taking tangible steps to turn this idea into a reality.
Monica Mueller and Bryn Merrell started Artful Venture with the goal to empower incredible artists throughout the world all with the shared vision of doing what they love. By featuring one artist each month and sharing their story and artistic aesthetic, Artful Venture hopes to bring the value of art back into the retail industry, in addition to broadening society’s definition of art. Artful Venture is more than an online fashion boutique; they curate wearable art in order to directly empower the artisan (their slogan: Wear Art. Support Artists).
Artful Venture’s product range currently holds jewelry, textile belts, camera straps, and artisan bags.
I got to chatting with the founders during their trek around the world from Cusco, Peru, and was so inspired by these incredibly driven, bright young (both in their early 20’s) women. They’re bringing value to art, and describe their vision and goal with us;
The Artful Venture – Words by Mueller and Merrell.
No one can argue the importance of art and design. Every object around us is designed in some sense. However, in this day in age, there is a huge disconnect between the actual artist designing goods, and the physical goods themselves. Faceless manufacturing corporations get in the way of us having a personal connection with the designer of our goods, taking the personal connection of the artist out of the equation completely.
Taking the artist and art out of this equation quiets their voice and aesthetic. And without acknowledging the art and artists that are ubiquitous in daily life, we start to believe that creativity and artistic ability is a rarity that only few are born with and are able to develop. What we need to acknowledge is that art is everywhere, and originates from creative people. Art is what we wear, what we see, and what we hear.
Without acknowledging the omnipresent nature of art, we lose sight of its importance, which is exemplified in the current global education system. Art is seen as an elective that only a select few children might be able to ‘excel’ in. We know it will take a while before society sees art as the forefront of our world, and therefore making it imperative in education, so Artful Venture donates a portion of each product to directly support arts education through our nonprofit partner, Arte del Mundo, based in Ecuador. Arte del Mundo offers a free afterschool program to local youth with a mission to promote literacy and artistic expression.
These ladies are the new wave for our future as consumers, and more importantly, the future of artists. Their personal connection to artists around the world is creating conscious consumption of goods, by sharing the story behind their goods. Each month, they feature an artisan from around the world (meet the artists here) and hope to bring the value of art and the individual artists into the forefront of the retail industry.
To shop consciously and “Wear art. Support artists,” please visit the Artful Venture website: www.artfulventure.com