Art Centers and Museums

Since being RIF’ed (reduction in force) from a decent job in the corporate world last February, I have been exploring my world, art and otherwise. A swirl of emotions, wonder and excitement has filled my days. I have been through both depression and elation. The full swing of emotions has surrounded me over these past months, as well as good friends to see me through it all. Through much support and encouragement, a dream that has been developing for me over the past several years is coming true — to open an art center. I am compelled to help myself and others to have eyes to see and a voice to expose the injustices that surround them through the arts. I also hope to replace them by showing The Beautiful that is woven into everything around us. With this in mind, I have opened Blue Sky Art Center, in the midst of the new Studio Channel Islands Art Center (SCIART) artist studios in Camarillo. All that to say that even though we are in an economy that may not be robust (to say the least), I’m driven like never before to support, promote and defend the arts in my (our) community. Now that I am able to dedicate myself full-time to the world of the arts, I am even more excited to see the Arts Council of the Conejo Valley being the Voice of the Arts in the Conejo Valley region. Our new board is better than I could have ever expected to lead. I am excited about the new members that have recently joined us, and wish the best to the dedicated board members that have moved on to make room for them. Our support of the arts is more important now than ever before. I see a lot of shifting dedication locally. I am very excited about the new plan to get the Regional Art Museum (RAM) off the ground. It appears that very soon, the City of Thousand Oaks will (finally) be sharing the recommendations of the art consultants about their “Arts Issues and Strategies” report. Since the City approved over $100,000 on this report in 2007, this final draft and discussion has been anticipated. For well over a year, we have been watching for signs of it. There are many organizations and City departments that are waiting with baited breath for the big “reveal.” A lot is pending on this, so we are all glad to see it finally come into being. (12/6/11 Update… the City ad hoc committee has Responded to the report. You can review the responses HERE) Our region is truly developing into one of the premier culturally relevant and progressive regions in the area. Much work must be done to continue the momentum. Please join us in keeping the ball rolling. With so many wonderful organizations doing great work all around us, we all have plenty of opportunities to get involved. Get the word out. Call on a friend or two to volunteer some hours to support the arts. Participate by being both creators and patrons of the arts. Be the leaders that our community needs to further the cause. If we all share in this task, so much good can be done.

Peace, Rich Brimer ACCV President