ABOUT US: The Seattle Outsider Artist Project (SOAP) is a Washington State non-profit for the advancement of marginal art by marginal people, art by non-artists, non-art by artists, and undifferentiated creative proliferation in the community. Please contact us immediately if you feel like you fit into any of these categories.S.O.A.P Home Page (new 2006)
The Seattle Outsider Artists Project (SOAP) is a Washington State
dedicated to supporting creative individuals and groups that cannot or
not get resources from conventional sources or exposure in conventional
venues. Like the Indymedia Center (IMC), it is the goal of SOAP to further
the self-determination of marginalized and under-represented people by
providing them with the tools and resources to become personally involved
media production, though our sphere of concern is creative expression
than journalism. We are working to provide alternatives to "mainstream"
modes of art production and consumption that rely heavily on a dwindling
state support apparatus, on foundations and institutions which reward
insular elites over promising amateurs and "outsiders", or on corporate
sponsorship, which is subject to the biases and narrow worldview typical
corporate controlled media.
Our mission and business model derive from the understanding that
sustainability for arts organizations today implies a certain degree of
independence from traditional benefactors and a willingness to experiment
with different methods of generating revenue. We seek to design programs
services that are volunteer-driven, low-overhead, and multi-purpose, ones
that create income as a byproduct of fulfilling our mission.
In our first year of operation, we will initiate and maintain a rolling
series of SOAP-sponsored events that showcase art, film, and performance
that embody our vision, elevating the organization's public profile and
providing the opportunity for members, potential members, and the public
meet and interact, thereby fostering a sense of community, purpose, and
momentum. These events will raise funds through admission fees, art
commissions, beverage and snack concessions, and limited merchandizing.
We will also establish a web-based peer-to-peer network to facilitate
collaborative creative activity through connecting people and projects
willing volunteers. By its nature, this service is free to the public, but
it creates a valuable volunteer pool to be drawn upon for SOAP operations
and activities, and also serves as an ideal vehicle for promotion of SOAP
events, programs, and services. The website will be ongoing and
self-sustaining, with virtually no overhead but at tremendous utility.
Additionally, SOAP will host a series of inexpensive workshops that focus
the skills and techniques of art production, taught by experienced
volunteers and covering a broad array of topics (such as silk-screening,
creative writing, welding, and basic electronics). This will empower
and catalyze creative activity, and at the same time generate revenue for
SOAP operations and activities.
Finally, SOAP will solicit grants and other resources from philanthropic
organizations. As our organization grows and its achievements accumulate,
this source of funding will increase the scale and diversity of events,
programs, and services that we are able to sponsor.