The Grand Valley Arts Forum for artists which the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture sponsored at the Art Center on March 20, 2010 brought out 60 local artists and other participants and the discussion that ensued showed an overwhelming desire for more interaction among creative individuals (artists, performers, writers, other creative businesses) – networking opportunities, sharing ideas, building relationships, promoting individual art/creations/events and community creativeness. To a great extent the avenues to do this via the web already exist (and can be expanded) through the Arts Commission’s website – www.gjarts.org – and the Visitor & Convention Bureau’s website www.visitgrandjunction.com.
Secondly, there were many conversations about the desire for more activism, involvement, and advocacy by creative individuals (serving on community boards, attending non-arts related meetings, creating a task force to develop an arts district, promoting the arts together).
Thirdly, the group discussed the need to effectively and continually brand the Grand Valley as an arts destination to attract cultural tourists and arts buyers, and toward that end the need to do additional consumer research and then additional promotion (which ties back into the web-based individual promotion we can all do right away at gjarts.org and visitgrandjunction.com). The Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau may be able to take the lead on this idea and work with artists and the Arts Commission, since branding the community to visitors is the VCB’s territory and expertise and they do it well.