All the core features that correlate with significant increases in decision-making and academic orientations and competencies hold at AFHâ€ŚThe young people have roles, rules, and risks that encircle their work and their sense of identity and place within the organization. Moreover, those who stay beyond the first six weeks seem to come to self-identify as artist, collaborative member, and responsible partner of the organization. Shirley Brice Heath, Stanford University
Overview In 2004, Artists For Humanity (AFH) intentionally sited its new headquarters,
known as the EpiCenter, in Boston’s Fort Point Channel Artist District because it
In the past year, for example, AFH succeeded in:
serves as a juncture between the area’s largest artist community,
• Hiring 300 youth apprentices.
business community and local neighborhoods. The EpiCenter became the
• Continuing to reach a 100% high school matriculation rate of AFH
third artist-owned building in Fort Point and the first building in the City of
graduating apprentices with 95% proceeding to college or other advanced
Boston to achieve LEED Platinum certification and named a Top 10 Green
educational or training programs.
Building in the nation by the American Institute of Architects as a positive
• Designing and creating a 25-foot entryway sculptural awning for the
example of environmentally conscious design and technology for the 21st Century. The EpiCenter is a natural continuum of AFH’s work that is centered on the sustainability of urban teens as they learn about art, creative careers, themselves, and the environment of the world around them while becoming active contributors to the economy.
existing EpiCenter. The awning was awarded First Place in the Exterior Category in the 6th Annual People’s Choice 3Form Installation Contest. • Opening AFH – The Store in Boston’s Faneuil Hall Market, and engaging teen artists in the design/build of a retail outlet tailored to their vision. • Securing important contracts for apprentice-designed visually-striking
The connection between sustainability and creative enterprise has proven
bicycle racks, now installed prominently throughout the City of Boston.
incredibly fruitful for Artists For Humanity. Since opening the EpiCenter, AFH
• Presenting at TedXMassArt, which focused on art and activism in Boston.
has expanded its programming and turned the facility into a hub for green creative arts in Boston, a nurturing home for talented but under-resourced teens, and a “hot spot” to rent for corporate, social, and special events in the
Long ago, at the beginning of the modern movement, architects dreamed of a new day. Instead of palaces for the powerful, instead of costly architecture that seeks to impress as art, they would apply their skills to solving the problems of ordinary society. They would make a new world that would be logical, economical, practical, and beautiful. Many of those ambitions were overblown, and the results were often disappointing. But occasional works like the EpiCenter remind us that this was an ideal worth pursuing. Robert Campbell Architecture Critic, Boston Globe
Since completing the EpiCenter, AFH’s Fort Point neighborhood has changed dramatically, as has public recognition for the role arts play in the economy. Redevelopment in this newly dubbed Innovation District, public investment in •In 2006, the Boston Redevelopment Authority released the Fort Point 100
creative industries and AFH’s successful creative enterprise all present
Acres Master Plan, which calls for strengthening the connection between
enormous opportunities for AFH teens to increase engagement with the
Boston’s downtown commercial district and the South Boston waterfront
community as contributing members to Boston’s creative economy. New
through enhanced public space and the development of a 24-hour
audiences will drive demand for AFH public art installations, corporate office
art purchases, exhibitions, signage, and many other fine art and design
•In 2008, Massachusetts set national precedence by appointing the first
services. With the AFH EpiCenter operating at full capacity for youth
Director of the Creative Economy.
employment and product development, meeting this demand will require
•In 2009, the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center announced plans to
significant program and facility expansion.
double its size for increased exhibit, meeting and hotel space. •In 2010, the City of Boston rebranded the Fort Point Channel Artist District and
AFH seeks to develop a Creative Industries EpiCenter that coincides with the
South Boston Seaport areas as the Innovation District to reflect recent
Innovation District’s strategy (articulated in www.innovationdistrict.org) of work,
relocation of several technology and emerging industries.
live, and play to create an “innovation eco-system,” rooted in the
•In August 2011, ABC’s Chronicle featured AFH as part of a profile on the Fort
neighborhood’s economic life force: creative industries.
Point Channel as Boston’s up-and-coming “it” neighborhood and Innovation District. •In 2012, State Street released plans to establish a corporate presence at One Channel Center to include a neighborhood park directly adjacent to the AFH EpiCenter.
One Channel Center
State Street Development
AFH Creative Industries Epicenter
One Channel Center
Boston Convention Center Expansion
Commonwealth Ventures Figure A-17 CHANNEL CENTER GARAGE MASSING VIEW 1
Vision and Goals for the Creative Industries Epicenter Artists For Humanity plans to develop a vacant lot adjacent to its 23,500
engagement opportunities. The remaining 30,000 square feet will afford
square foot EpiCenter with a vision to create an 76,700 square foot Creative
collaborative uses for industry and educational partners.
Industries EpiCenter. AFHâ€™s vision includes building on current programming to foster greater self-sufficiency among its diverse studios; and forging partnerships with complementary companies and organizations to cultivate a hub for green creative industries in and around the EpiCenter.
I appreciate AFH because they have given me so many opportunities. From enhancing my art skills to helping me
The design will include re-orienting the existing facilityâ€™s front entrance from West Second Street to West First Street in visual response to Fort Point redevelopment. This will allow AFH to directly open onto a new two-acre community park; face the new State Street corporate presence at One Channel Center; and symbolically welcome the Innovation District. The Boston Redevelopment Authority and EpiCenter neighbors have expressed support for these preliminary plans.
The Creative Industries EpiCenter will feature 46,700 square feet for AFH programming/youth employment; product development/manufacturing; administrative offices and conference use; event space and audience
with the college process. Current AFH participant
View of the Creative Industries EpiCenter from Channel Center Park CafĂŠ, Gallery, Retail main entrance
Expanded Job Creation and On-site Production Capabilities Painting | AFH will double participation in the foundation program in
venture. Screen printing could easily envision expanding to a 3,000 sq. ft.,
painting, to employ 160 youth, by creating an expanded painting studio in
thereby increasing capacity, efficiency and environmental sustainability. With
our new facility. The third floor of the Epicenter, which currently houses the
improved equipment and space, screen printing and sculpture could offer
painting studio, will be dedicated to advanced study in painting focused on
increased full-time job opportunities for disengaged populations (such as
large-scale painting projects, banners, murals, stage art, etc. AFH also has
out-of-school, pre-sentenced, and adjudicated youth/young adults) to
significant need to build storage capacity for its large collection of youth
participate in work that develops capacity for collaboration and cooperation.
created art and design.
Digital Media | With the second floor of the EpiCenter free of screen printing
Sculpture/3D/Industrial Design (ID) | Currently located in a 1,725 sq. ft.
and sculpture/3D/ID, a full range of digital media training opportunities could
section on the second floor of the EpiCenter, AFHâ€™s sculpture/3D/ID studio
be expanded. Through studio innovation and recent purchases of advanced
will be relocated to a new space of at least 6,000 sq. ft. to include a fully
technology, design and production equipment, AFH is meeting growing
equipped wood shop, metal shop and drafting/computer design stations.
demands for services in video arts, digital advertising, online commerce and
Acquiring top of the line automated computer-driven fabrication equipment
communication, and an influx of entertainment industry needs. Training in
will inspire a new level of collaboration with community artists, as it is highly
digital media prepares apprentices for participation in the video, graphics and
sought after but unavailable to most artists.
film industries, which are rapidly increasing their presence in Massachusetts.
Screen Printing | Demand for screen printing has outpaced capacity. The studio, located in a 1,100 sq. ft. on the second floor of the EpiCenter, is bursting at the seams, and AFH sees great enterprise potential for expanding this
I appreciate AFH because it has given me a chance to see what it feels like working in an actual studio, which may be what I will do in the future. I also have no art classes in my school, so this makes up for it. Current AFH participant
New Program Development Keyholder Residency Opportunities Mentorship Exchange/Members Fee
engagement. AFH will provide skills training, employment and access to
Studios AFH will offer keyholder access and studio space to young
educational pathways. Training would begin in a manufacturing capacity and
artists and/or community members working in three-dimensional media. As
youth would graduate into progressively more responsible positions including
Sculpture/3D/ID artists graduate from college, they face significant challenges
training in design and computer literacy, and the development of skills in
continuing their work â€“ they need access to fully equipped sculpture studios;
marketing, organization and time management. The program may include
and Boston does not have any member-based studio opportunities in the
certification opportunities in design technology, office management, or
sculptural arts. This new opportunity will give fresh talented art school
graduates a space and community within which they can develop their craft.
AFH will develop a suite of options to make the studio space affordable to young artists, including opportunities to exchange intensive mentorship to teens or lead specialized workshops for a reduced monthly fee. The keyholder residency model is currently in practice in two NY organizations: 3rd Ward and Lower East Side Print Shop.
Job Creation/Vocational Training for Adjudicated and Out-of-School Youth Certificate-Based Training: This expanded facility would enable AFH to initiate programming for out-of-school/adjudicated youth/young adults to participate in an intensive reentry program for workforce and community
Enhanced Community Involvement and Audience Building Opportunities Full-time Gallery
AFH’s current Lewis Gallery doubles as event rental space. Dedicated space
AFH partners with many local caterers and event planners on its successful
for a full-time gallery would create opportunities for rotating exhibitions and
gallery rental venture. Several caterers are interested in helping AFH launch
artist exchanges. A full-time gallery would allow Artists For Humanity to build
and operate a café to include culinary arts opportunities for youth and young
more relationships, and create opportunities for a youth exchange.
adults. A café would capitalize on new development in Fort Point, including a park that will open at the re-oriented front entrance to the Creative Industries
EpiCenter. It would draw audiences to the AFH gallery and retail store while
AFH has a wide variety of fine art and design products at retail outlets across
the country including the DeCordova Museum Store in Lincoln, MA, The King of Greene Street in NYC, AFH-The Store at Faneuil Hall Marketplace in Boston, the
Video Screening Room
Museum Store at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and the
AFH will include a dedicated video screening room for showcasing films and
Gallery of Functional Art in Santa Monica, CA. An AFH retail store would be a
documentaries created by youth participants, and possibly as part of guest
perfect compliment to the Creative Industries EpiCenter, offering opportunities
artist series to profile emerging artists in digital media.
for management training for teen employees, and a venue for generating interest in our products and services.
Membership Opportunities With a full-time gallery, AFH could offer a roster of regularly scheduled events, artist talks, salons, etc. and build a membership structure and serve as a community meeting place.
A Learning Laboratory Based on its mission of empowerment, self-sufficiency, and education in the arts, AFH directly involved youth participants in the development of architectural plans for the existing EpiCenter. Carlo Lewis – an AFH co-founder and Rhode Island School of Design trained architect – led an architecture studio for the duration of the design/development process. He and 10 youth artists worked directly with architects, structural engineers, and alternative energy specialists on green design concepts for the facility. Through research and project-based studies, youth gained experience in urban planning, renewable energy disciplines, interior siting, and model-making. Significantly, several youth ideas were incorporated into the facility’s design. This opportunity empowered three youth to pursue college degrees in architecture. AFH envisions a similar teaching and learning opportunity for design and construction of the Creative Industries EpiCenter. Several programs, including Rural Studio (Alabama), Studio 804 (Kansas), and others have demonstrated successful ways that college students can take leadership and learning roles in design and construction projects. This is also happening in Boston, in the architectural curriculum at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design
AFH is considering four models of youth apprentice involvement for an urban studio, which could be undertaken in various combinations. • A course or program would be set up at AFH to follow the design and construction process. As part of the agreement with architects/engineers/ builders hired to work on the project, a team of people from these businesses would be engaged to teach this course, which would provide an opportunity to learn about the process, as well as to play an active role in it. • AFH participants would take an internship/apprenticeship role within firms engaged to perform the work on the building. A small group of participants (3-5) would work together at a firm, which will provide the opportunity to work at several of the different companies involved in the process. • Participants would be responsible for individual parts or pieces of the project, which could be integrated into the larger building project. • A mentoring design or architectural student group and AFH participants would take on the primary responsibility for the design and construction of a part of the new facility, while being supported by a team of professionals. This is the model of most of the college-level design/build studios currently in existence. AFH recently partnered with Sam Batchelor’s design/build program at MassArt on an award-winning awning for the existing EpiCenter. This project would segue nicely into a larger-scale urban studio partnership, and create opportunities for MassArt
(MassArt), which includes a required course in design-build, taught, since its
students who have already completed the required design/build program, potentially
inception four years ago, by Sam Batchelor.
as a thesis or research project. The exact roles and relationships between AFH, MassArt, and their students would have to be carefully considered.
Potential Partners Artists For Humanity has a strong history of collaboration and
Arts Entrepreneurs, including the five categories of creative industries
entrepreneurial partnership with a number of companies and organizations
identified by the Massachusetts Creative Economy Initiative:
whose work supports their mutual intent and mission. Several have indicated
• Architecture and Engineering
interest in participating as partners, collaborators or tenants in the expanded
Creative Industries EpiCenter. AFH envisions partnerships that will provide
• 3D/Industrial Design
greater opportunities for its youth apprentices, such as with artists/
• Graphic Design
entrepreneurs; green industries; trades; and educational institutions. AFH
• Web Design
will provide its partners with the opportunity to develop a trained workforce of creative youth entrepreneurs who can support the expansion of their
Within these categories graphic designers, small industrial design firms, and
boutique advertising and architecture firms are likely to the appropriate size to be accommodated by studio and office rental space in the new EpiCenter.
By capitalizing on synergies between its arts and educational support for
Green design companies are particularly strong partners for Artists For
high school youth, the Creative Industries EpiCenter will re-energize Fort
Humanity as they also link the creative arts with environmental sensibilities.
Point, provide expanded learning opportunities and career pathways for the AFH teen apprentices and increased capacity for emerging green
Green Industries, Social Entrepreneurs, and Trades including:
businesses with related employment and community development benefits.
• Construction and trades • Jewelry and gifts
Additional space in the EpiCenter could be leased to tenants whose work fits within the sustainability goals of Artists For Humanity, and fits squarely with goals of the Innovation District.
• Food retail
• Resources, including funding, training, parenting and social networking • Retail, including apparel • Services such as business services, consulting, recycling, job training and moving; and Transportation.
Local colleges and universities have creative educational programs that would be synergistic with the work of Artists For Humanity, such as: • Montserrat College of Art • Massachusetts College of Art and Design • Babson College • Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
In addition to specific programs, graduating students may be in need of studio and office space as they seek to become arts and science entrepreneurs. AFH will also consider partnerships with Boston public schools and charter schools that serve the same population we employ.
Case Studies Several cases of creative industries development projects are summarized in
Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Pittsburgh, PA | www.manchesterguild.org
the business plan to offer examples of successful collaborations of community
• Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild (MCG) was established by Bill Strickland in
development, arts entrepreneurship, public/private partnerships, and approaches to funding their efforts. Some projects are more noteworthy for their accomplishments in community building, others in securing diverse sources of revenues, and still others in their success in supporting artists in their
1968 as an art program for inner-city minority children, focusing on ceramic arts, photography, and exhibition space. The 62,000 square foot vocational training and arts facility in the North Side of Pittsburgh contains expanded
work. Not all have succeeded in every realm, but each has important lessons
studio space, a 350-seat concert hall, classrooms, workshops, exhibition
space, a library, lunchroom, and an IBM Center.
Green Exchange, Chicago, IL | www.greenexchange.com • The Green Exchange is a sustainable green retail and office development project located in the Logan Square area of Chicago intended for over 100 eco-friendly business and organizations. • This four-story, 272,000 square foot historic building, upon completion, will be the largest sustainable building community in the country to house tenants offering green products and services. • The biggest challenge for Green Exchange is trying to lease the remaining retail and office space in an environment when companies are retrenching. In response the owners are emphasizing the opportunities for synergies between companies in the building.
• The Bidwell Training Center trains 200 students each year in courses leading to majors and careers in chemical laboratory technicians, culinary arts, horticulture, medical claims processor and medical coding, office technology and pharmacy technology. • The success of this program has spawned replication replicated in San Francisco, CA; Cincinnati, OH; and Grand Rapids, MI with the assistance of Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild.
Green Exchange Interior
Manchester Craftsmen's Guild
ArtsTech, Kansas City, MO | www.artstech-kc.org
Lower East Side Print Shop, Manhattan, NY | www.printshop.org
• ArtsTech is a public/private collaborative venture, modeled after Artists For
• Lower East Side Printshop, founded in 1968, is a not-for-profit studio in New York
Humanity that offers young people and the community an opportunity to
City that serves artists through its workspace residency programs which give
advance their artistic and technological skills in an entrepreneurial
artists space and time to work, stipends, technical assistance, career
development, and public exposure.
• COMBAT, in conjunction with the City of Kansas City, Missouri, and the
• One factor in the success of the Lower East Side Printshop is its narrow artistic
Missouri Department of Public Safety, is the key anchor partner with ArtsTech
focus, working exclusively with printmakers.
(formerly Pan-Educational Institute).
• The Keyholder residency program is the core of the organization, providing the
• In March of 1999, COMBAT was entrusted with managing the “Sentenced to
space and resources for emerging artists to practice their work, and it is the main
the Arts Project” (STTAP). STTAP was created to provide innovative art education
program supported by funders.
and expressive therapy to adjudicated youth between the ages of 14 and 19 involved with the Jackson County, Missouri, Family Court (JCFC) and eventually the Clay County, Missouri, Juvenile Justice Center (CCJJC). 3rd Ward, Brooklyn, NY | www.3rdward.com • 3rd Ward is a for-profit member-based 20,000 square foot design center for creative professionals created to provide space and equipment to artists working independently at competitive rates. • The facilities include four 800 square foot photo studios, a 10,000 square foot wood and metal shop that accommodate the needs of wood workers, welders, and sculptors. The facilities also provide 4,000 square feet of work stations for freelance creative professionals.
The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia, PA |
another 60,000 square feet available for lease to tenants and for event and
• The Fabric Workshop and Museum is a non-profit arts organization devoted
• Designed by John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects, the building won an
to creating new work in new materials and new media in collaboration with
award from the Los Angeles American Institute of Architects in 2004 and a Rudy
emerging, nationally, and internationally recognized artists.
Bruner Silver Medal Award in 2007.
• Located at 1214 Arch Street in Center City Philadelphia, The Fabric Workshop
• The main factor for the success of the LA Design Center is the commitment
and Museum is supplemented by The New Temporary Contemporary at 1222
and vision of the owners and developers to give back to their community and
Arch Street which provides additional space for exhibition programming and
help revitalize South Central Los Angeles through this innovative model.
storefront windows facing the street used for site-specific artist projects and installations.
22@Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain | www.22barcelona.com
• The Fabric Workshop and Museum has developed an online curriculum and
• The refurbishment of the Problenou industrial district is based on the
educational program that allows it to reach beyond its doors and into
replacement of the old urban classification 22a, designating old town centers
as exclusively industrial in use, with the new 22@ classification, allowing for mixed use development of all non-polluting urban activities that do not affect
LA Design Center, Los Angeles, CA | www.ladesigncenter.com
the surrounding environment.
• The LA Design Center was as a furniture showroom for the numerous
• The project estimates that it will develop 4,000,000 square meters of total
manufacturers in the South Central Los Angeles area to show the owners’
ground floor space for production activity of 3,200,000 square meters and the
products and help revitalize this neighborhood, two blocks from the site of the
remaining space for other uses such as housing and related facilities.
Rodney King race riots of 1992.
• This project received over 180 million € of public investment
• Renovated in 2003, two dilapidated warehouses were converted into 20,000
• As of 2008, 25,000 jobs were created, with an estimated total of 150,000 new
square feet of space for Cisco Brothers, the Pinedo’s company, and
jobs to be established once the project is completed.
LA Design Center
The Fabric Workshop and Museum 22 Barcelona Lower East Side Print Shop
I appreciate AFH because they have given me so many opportunities. From enhancing my art skills to helping me with the college process, AFH has been very helpful with many other things besides just providing me with a job. Current AFH participant
I appreciate what AFH has done for me because before AFH I wasnâ€™t doing much and I spent most time outside hanging out on the streets because I was bored. AFH has given me better things to do and I discovered my talent and love for painting. AFH has brought up my grades and homework, and AFH has also paid me for doing so. Current AFH participant
Lessons Learned from the Cases The cases included in this study have important parallels for the Creative
• Tapping into the private sector can strengthen the impact of job training
Industries EpiCenter and demonstrate in a concrete way some of the
and job placement; and City planning processes have the power to move
opportunities and potential risks associated with the various approaches
beyond individual sites and create synergies across an entire district.
AFH may pursue.
Opportunities to inform the Artists For Humanity expansion • The power of creating synergies across businesses and entrepreneurs should not be underestimated; • Maintaining a clear, core focus is important for many of these initiatives; • Development of projects that integrate arts, community development, and entrepreneurship can become important catalysts for economic development and neighborhood revitalization; • Many successful projects have developed communities of artists and strong brand identities; • Profit can be generated through rental of arts space and equipment; • Success is common in organizations with strong, visionary leadership; • Developing a gallery and a permanent collection of work can develop an arts organization’s identity and reputation;
Expansion Requirements and Issues The new Creative Industries EpiCenter would require approximately 76,700 square feet to accommodate the AFH vision and the needs of AFH and its partner organizations.
EXPANDED CREATIVE INDUSTRIES EPICENTER
Sculpture/3D design studio and production
Painting studio and fine art storage
Design studios Screen Printing studio
Event space with adjoining break-out areas
Artists For Humanity Administrative spaces
Video screening room
Café and sitting area
Gallery for curated shows and presentations
possible collaborative uses/partners in the additional 30,000 square feet of
To be determined/these are some
Collaborative Uses (to be determined)
76,700 square feet
• Artaic studio, office and showroom • JC Cannistraro training center and workshop • Short-term rental space to transform into AFH or other uses • Child care center for young parents • Other related partner to be identified • University based artistic collaboration (MassArt design-build program, Montserrat College of Art, AiB) • Continuing education/professional development collaboration (Arts & Business Council, Babson) • Additional Retail space(s)
Funding Requirements and Opportunities Artists For Humanity is entering the quiet phase of a capital campaign to determine funding capacity and assemble initial support. Staunch supporters, including several who partnered on the 2000 campaign, have committed to investing in the proposed Creative Industries EpiCenter. AFH is also working with Affirmative Investments to secure New Market Tax Credits for the development.
AFH has identified the following naming opportunities in the Creative Industries EpiCenter: • Entrance
• Open Space/Park on Fourth Floor
• 3D/Sculpture Studio
• Events Space
• Painting Studio
• Video Screening Room
• Design Studio
As AFH determines the development scale and finalizes preliminary designs, it will set more concrete funding goals and publicly open the campaign.
Next Steps Phase 1: Acquisition Planning
Phase 2: Fundraising
•Finalize and move forward on strategic plan
• Expand fundraising campaign.
and recommendations. •Plan for real estate development including financing options, and analysis of development scenarios.
• Continue to monitor success of partnership approach.
Phase 3: Development of Creative Industries EpiCenter
•Begin architectural design process by finalizing space requirements and working with the Boston Redevelopment Authority on zoning and
• Execute real estate development strategy.
• Begin construction of EpiCenter expansion.
•Conduct thorough financial analysis of project.
• Execute financing plan.
•Plan for and begin initial phase of capital campaign.
• Continue fundraising.
•Finalize the partnership approach, defining roles
• Assess and adjust partnership as needed.
• Continue to evaluate project success.
Contact Artists For Humanity 100 West Second Street Boston, MA 02127 617.268.7620 Susan Rodgerson, Executive/Artistic Director SRodgerson@AFHBoston.org www.AFHBoston.org Architectural renderings by: James Batchelor, President & CEO Patricia Cornelison, Principal Arrowstreet, Inc. www.Arrowstreet.com Vision statement developed with: Community Partners Consultants, Inc. Adele Fleet Bacow, President Annis Whitlow Sengupta, Senior Planner www.community-partners.net
In the Video studio I am given a large amount of responsibilities and opportunities. At 18 years old, I have already been able to work with major companies such as Google, Adobe, and WGBH to produce videos. Simply interacting with these companies gives me huge insight into the business and technical aspect of the art I am learning at Artists For Humanity. Current AFH participant
AFH has been more than just a job for me it's been a place to go to when I need someone to talk to, a teacher with power tools, a place where all my friends are, a place where my voice is heard and listened to. AFH is a best friend, a strict mother, a loving father, and an all-knowing grandparent. If I could I would never leave :] Current AFH participant
creative jobs for creative youth Artists For Humanity 100 W 2nd St Boston, MA 02127 ww.AFHBoston.org