NOBAS: North of Boston Art Salon @ TLGUTS

Donna Dodson, Squirrel
For a few years, I used to drop in one Sunday a month at Donna Dodson's Art Salon Boston. Every time I went, I left with enough good energy to last me a month and to keep me focused on my work.  I first met Donna when she showed in one of our earlier exhibitions, Goddess.  I was struck the quality of her work, by her professionalism, and her enthusiasm.

Being an artist is an often lonely practice. You are an entrepreneur, and unless you have a staff doing your work for you, which few of us do, you are running your own marketing department, coming up with new innovative ideas, manufacturing your product (that sounds horrible, but there it is), finding clients and vendors, keeping inventory records, financial records, etc. It's a lot more work than most people understand.

Donna's  salon brought artists of various modalities- dancers, writers, visual artists of all sorts, architects, musicians, art teachers, etc. together to talk about current topics of relevance to the arts: housing, grants, techniques, support for the lifestyle, marketing, new technologies, new literature, etc. They were like a monthly work meeting for artists and creative people to get out of their studios, network, and feed each other's need to communicate about the issues they face as artists.

I hosted a couple of Donna's meetings here once she started moving them around so that we could get a look at different galleries and venues, talk to various experts in the field, etc.A while back, the meetings stopped as Donna become quite busy with her own shows, so we are going to start having salons here at TLGUTS on the first Sunday of each month. 

Sarah Ashodian and I talked about starting NOBAS a while back and moving it around on the North Shore once it is established. This Sunday, May 1st, is the first run. We will be meeting at TLGUTS at 10am - noon.

We start with brief introductions, go on to throw around topics, pick one, talk for a while, then share news about upcoming events and opportunities, work, etc.

I'm looking forward to seeing this take off. If you haven't been to a salon before, come on down! Sometimes there's a few people, sometimes it's packed, but it's always a good time!


  1. I miss the salon so much I've been accepted for a week-long fellowship at Maine College of Art this summer and one of the points I made for applying is that I miss the artist commaraderie that the disbanded salon provided. So I am ecstatic that you have taken up the torch so to speak. I plan to come, but not this Sunday. Keep me posted and good luck! Jeannine Hunter Lazzaro

  2. Miss you too Jeannine. Definitely will keep you posted. We had a fantastic talk about dealing with the outside world through your work, or working in spite of it (making work conditions to support your process, parenting, support vs. naysayers, taking the step toward professionalism, interdependence of artists in history (think Kahlo/O'Keefe?Rivera/Stieglitz/Adams/Weston, Smith/Mapplethorpe etc.) Looking forward to the next one. You would have loved it.


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