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2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Artomatic

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture

Mission: Artomatic creates community, builds audience and expands economic development by transforming available building space into a playground for artistic expression. Open-entry events showcase creative work including visual art, music, performance, film, and fashion. Artomatic is a non-profit organization headed by a volunteer Board of Directors and is funded in part by the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, an agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Programs: Installed exhibition of 2 3 dimensional works at regan national airport

an artists holiday party which displayed artists, performers, musicians, live music and an art gallery.

an artists new year party which displayed artists, performers, musicians, live music and an art gallery.

Community Stories

36 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It is simple, was great to be involved with all members, great affords, great team, great art, great performers great topics. Is never a negative experience with artomatic. I leave far away so my time was limited to the voluntary schedule, I was wishing to go back but some how became expensed to pay hotels and eat on restaurants even more if the family is involved. Some time so much art together will make difficult to sale because people can not focus and I can not tell. Ones I have a printing business and I learned to do for a client no more than 2 designs to chose, the early times I tried so hard to please them and make few as my imagination can create, I was frustrated to see that the client have so much difficult to chose even if he like what he saw. Some time we ending in no selection. I see the same with to much art, this happen in my studio and the museum http://www.communitywalk.com/va/aibanez_museum_aim/map/124531 People really get impress but they do not know what to see. Hope every one be part of ARTOMATIC I can nevr be more thankful and happy with the experience.

6

Former Volunteer

Rating: 5

I took part in the first 3 Art-o-Matics. In 1999, at the old funky laundry building at Florida and 13th, I showed my art work for the first time, in conjunction with a good friend. It gave me the experience selecting work, mounting an exhibition, publicizing it, and marveling at the outpouring of the DC arts community, 250 people I believe participated. My second outing was at the old Sears/Hechinger's building on Wisconsin with a group of artist friends who had collaborated on an exhibition of our work at one of the venues Art Salon offered (long since converted to something else). I sold some work, which was a great boost. The third time at Waterside Mall was a particularly poignant experience. I had been chief of staff at EPA for 4 years, and was now returning for the first time to what had been the Agency's headquarters. The signs were still up in the library and I showed in a room with out much ventilation, one of the problems with the building when I worked there.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 3

It was a good experience. Great to partisipate in such a large gathering of a Washington D.C. artists' exhibition. Volunteering was a big part of exhibit and that area worked well with the artists.

11

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I felt that ALL of the art works were substandard. It gave the impression that DC artists have absolutely no skill. Which, as a local artist myself, offended me. Perhaps in the future instead of an enormous exhibit of kitsch, you might consider a small exhibit of fine art... just a suggestion.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 3

I have been involved with Artomatic twice: once as a visitor, and once as an artist. As a visitor, the experience was fantastic. Floor after floor of art, nonstop programming, food and alcohol - and no charge to get in! As a participant, however, the event was disorganized and frustrating. Each participant is required to volunteer for three shifts, which seemed reasonable. The problem was that each time I volunteered, I was told new or different guidelines, and none of the guidelines were followed correctly anyway. My first time volunteering, I was to take out trash on the freight elevator, but there was no one there to help bag the trash on each floor (I was not supposed to leave the elevator) and the process was extremely inefficient. No one knew who was supposed to be doing what, and if you left your post, you were scolded by the extremely immature and - for lack of a better word - mean volunteer coordinator. The second two times I volunteered, I was a floor guide, but was again treated like a child by the volunteer coordinator, who clearly had set her own rules and would get angry at anyone trying to actually enjoy the experience. I was supposed to stay on the floor with my partner, one of us covering the entrance area to the floor and the other looking for people who might be stealing art. At the same time, I had to help the person selling drinks, the trash person, and people from other floors because they were given conflicting instructions and no one knew exactly how it was supposed to work. The volunteer coordinator never once came by to ask us if there was something we needed, and one time, my replacement didn't show up at all (I had to leave my partner's replacement there by himself). Next year I will go to Artomatic as a visitor, but I will never again participate. I urge Artomatic to find a new volunteer coordinator who has people skills and an understanding of how to manage groups, and I urge participants to get their volunteer shifts over with early so that they can enjoy the event the rest of the month.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A few years ago my daughter took me to my first Artomatic. It was a delight to the senses. The various artists, some professional, some just beginning were placed on equal footing in the same space. Each with their own moment of honesty to share. Some of the sharing was glaring, and some tugged at your heartstrings. Artomatic is what true art is all about. A place for the creative side of mankind to be shared. I vowed that in 2009 I would participate as an artist. Scarey, hard, requiring some committment - YES. Worthwhile - YES. Art changes your life. It changes the way you think. Art is like finding water in a desert or flying through a cloud. It provides you with something that is required, demanded for living. I created a Vegan Pig Farm. As I started to set up my display I found myself surrounded by professional artists. I felt honored, enriched, grateful. I was standing among the few, the dedicated, the talented. Artomatic had provided me with a platform, and opportunity to say something of value from my perspective. As you walk through the many floors of art, and you stop to admire the different, the pretty, the shocking, and the brilliant - you began to understand how art is so important for our existance and our ability to go forward. It challenges us not to accept the status of now, but to imagine the "what if." I am so grateful to artomatic for including me in its miracle.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first visited the Artomatic in 2008 and instantly fell in love with the mass collection of creativity. In 2009, I had enough money saved up to display a few pieces and jumped at the opportunity. The whole experience was lifting as friends and strangers appreciated my art work, but what really got me pumped was meeting the other artist. There were plumbers who painted, accountants who took pictures and lawyers who molded metal. It really taught me that no matter what I did with my life, there would be time for art.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My artwork is kind of quirky and I don't think my paintings could ever get gallery representation. I went through about 2000 business cards during the month of Artomatic and got exposure I could never imagined. I sold most of the paintings that were hanging and I've had 43 commissions since! It was such a positive experience and I look forward to getting more involved in the future!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Of all of the places that I have had the opportunity to perform, Artomatic 2009 was by far my favorite experience, so far. I am a great admirer of graffiti art, so having the backdrop of the stage covered with such art was a great start. Performing with such a diverse group of performers, and being surrounded by unique art that you would have to attend multiple galleries to see, was incredible! I spent the rest of the day, in between performers, checking out each floor of art. A week later, I came back again to focus solely on the different art exhibitions. I was floored. The inspiration of that event is still with me. I plan to come back next time!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Artomatic gives local, national and international artists the chance to show their work without going through a juried process first. For the public, it is a free exhibit of literally thousands of pieces of art for anyone from kids to adults to enjoy. The eduction programs and marketplace are big favorites of mine as well.

7

Former Volunteer

Rating: 2

It started out well but ended up bad. I would like to see more appreciation for the board members and hired staff. After the work was finished, I was treated like a 3rd class citizen in dealing with my contributions. The experience has really really made me think twice about participating again. The other volunteers I met were great!! It was the few at the top that felt a strange entitlement to be aholes about whose art was important enough to block by business interest. If someone ask me what I thought about the organization knowing the politics that was flying around for the last two going on three years I would say that the organization wants to be FOR-PROFIT and want to place “certain” people in paid positions without looking at the “little people” that got them there in the first place. It was a good idea but its quickly morphing into a “you’re not like me” club of arrogant people that forgot the reason why and how artwork should be seen.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Three years Artomatic gave me the opportunity to plan and show my first art exhibit. So when I decided to return to work as a filmmaker, Artomatic was the obvious subject for a feature length documenary. That film will feature the art and music of Artomatic alumni who have gone on to become successful as well as interviews with these artists and members of Artomatic's board. To be sure, Artomatic's leadership had been critical to the development of this film project. Jay D. Krasnow Filmmaker/Director Journey to the Center of Artomatic www.artomaticvoyage.com

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

Artomatic is my favorite DC art scene to recommend to folks looking for art in the city. It features upwards of 1,000 local artists, and I love that the space is open for a variety of levels of talent and genre. Best of all, it's free/by donation and hence is open to all people to enjoy. Last year was my first artomatic experience, and I'll be sure not to miss it again!

9

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

i visited this summer and was very inspired. i'm an artist, not a visual artist, but it inspired me to write more and try and audition for more theater productions. as a person who has a lot of artist friends in the dc area, it was wonderful to see that they had a great medium for which to display their work. it's a nice space, too. i love the urban feel that the cement floors and exposed ceilings give to the place. very New York. loved it.

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Artomatic has made art a part of my life in ways I never could have imagined. When I stumbled upon my first event in 2007, I was stunned at the amount of creativity lurking in what often seems a dull government town. I could just picture lawyers and lobbyists coming home after work and making time to do this other stuff -- painting, building, editing photos, whatever they do. I even ran into someone I knew standing by his circuit board installation, and I would have never guessed he was an artist! In 2008, I went back several times and took different friends each time. Spending so much time with the installations and discussing the work with so many people drove home to me that art isn't just for high-falutin' arTISTEs, it's something anyone can do. So in 2009, I got up the nerve to show some of my own photos. It was scary and thrilling to stand up and declare myself as a creative person, and I got tons of great encouragement from other participants and friends who visited. I have about six ideas for things I could do at the next one, and I'm now on the lookout for other creative outlets. I even joined a band! I can't think of another experience that would have brought this creative spirit out in me -- the scale, the openness, and the accessibility of this annual event are unparalleled. Many thanks to the people who work all year round to make it happen.

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering for Artomatic has been an incredible experience. I help with marketing, and working with Artomatic has been a great way to meet new people like me for work + fun. It has shown me more about DC than I ever could have expected to see! After I lost my job during layoffs in 2008, Artomatic made it possible for me to continue my work on my own and has helped me establish a great network of freelance jobs, all of my first ones with people I met at Artomatic. There is no other more open, accessible, and inclusive art or social scene in DC - and we put on an awesome show!