Culture | Emma Nichols for The Clarion
While there are fewer students majoring in art than, for example, nursing or business, with Art du Corps, a new event this spring, artists of all kinds are hoping to join together to shine and make a difference.
This spring’s new arts entrepreneurship class will culminate with Art du Corps, a Vaudeville-style benefit show donating all profits to art programming at the Bethel and King Child Development Centers. The show will include artists of all kinds: visual, performing, musical, film—anything that shows Bethel’s artistic culture.
The class is in charge of putting on Art du Corps, and it is hoping to cater to a variety of artists while also gaining hands-on experience in the creativity and business that it takes to produce an artistic product.
Junior Josh Palmer is in charge of marketing the event. “A lot of people on campus are artists but don’t share their art publicly,” he said. “We’re trying to reach out to every type of art.”
“I think this is a real opportunity for the students to showcase the talents God has given them and pass it forward to the next generation,” said Brent Adams, the class professor.
This semester’s group is all theatre majors, although it is open to all students pursuing creative fields.
Adams found the inspiration for this class several years ago. After operating a business with his wife that does theatre performances and workshops at churches, he believed he could pass along his knowledge. The class was a way for his students to experience creating a business centered around the arts.
“The purpose of the class is to give students in the arts a business mindset,” he said. “Artists tend to shy away from that. I’m helping them to step back from that fear, see what’s involved and understand what they have to deal with.”
Adams said he is proud to notice students getting more comfortable with marketing, creative organizing and connecting with larger organizations on the outside.
Junior Krissi Dines plans to work on the business side of art organizations, and has enjoyed using this career path in this class while working alongside her fellow student artists. As a former intern for the Minnesota and Utah Operas, she can operate analytically while allowing others to stay creative. Dines will also be working in art management at a theatre in Pennsylvania this summer.
The theatre students have enjoyed learning about business structures that an artist can take on, as well as concrete examples of mixing art and business.
“You don’t have to completely separate your art from your business,” Dines said. “In the theatre we are our art, and we are a business if we want to work and be hired. Sometimes it’s hard to separate that from your personal life.”
The class teaches skills that any budding artist can use and emphasizes the mixture of different artistic talents.
“There is a wealth of talent and a wide range of artistic abilities here. I think it’s good for students to see that,” Adams said.
“There’s no reason we can’t learn and grow from one another,” Dines added. “It just takes people being brave enough to put themselves out there.”
Along with giving the arts world at Bethel a chance to shine, the event will also benefit CDC’s art programming to further the development of the next generation of artists.
Adams and the class hope that Art du Corps will bring out the “underground arts movement” that exists on campus, encouraging students to share their products with the campus and one other.
“We hardly ever get to combine the arts in some way, and we have the unique opportunity to show people that students are doing great work,” Adams said. “That inspires me, the synergy that comes out of that. We need to celebrate it.”