“Because, Why Not?” – Being An Artist In Albuquerque


Hey Beer Farmers,

Hope you are alive and well on this rainy day. It’s on days like this that we sit back on the Beer Farm, as the drops crowd our window panes, and think about how grateful we are to be surrounded by such an artistic and creative community. Those of you who are regulars on the Beer Farm – either in Nob Hill, or at Wells Park, know that we cater to our artists quite a bit. There is rarely a night you can walk into our Wells Park tap room, and NOT catch something fun, different, sort of crazy, and always CREATIVE, going on. We take pride in the way that our establishment allows for established artists, and growing artists to meet, build, and continue supporting and sustaining their efforts to do what they love for a living. When we were busy thinking about the greater ABQ community, and all the ways that other institutions, businesses, and individuals, lend to the ability for folks of the creative persuasion to make a living, we thought a list of why being an artist in ABQ, might be fun and insightful for our readership. We turned to the hands of our Good Times Liaison for said list – so here you go – in no particular order – 5 Reasons To Be An Artist In Albuquerque:

  1. When you are an artist in Albuquerque, your “trade-value” is incredibly high: Need something done…? Gotta painting? Can you tattoo? Want to spend some time decorating human faces at a little one’s birthday bash? Whatever you got in that artistic arsenal of yours, can be used as “cash,” or at least in replacement of. Albuquerque is privy to the trade of goods and services, and the more artsy those goods are, seemingly the more “currency” any creative has at his or her disposal.
  2. Cross-Pollination is a regular occurrence: Are you a painter, a dancer, a DJ, a poet, or comedian? Any of the above works for just about ANY show on ANY night; that’s right, the mixing and blending of genres of art, and of artists themselves, happens on a regular basis these days. It doesn’t matter what your expertise is, you often can get in where you fit in, in ABQ – and where you fit in, can often be decided by just asking to “be down…” Try it! We swear it works!
  3. People Actually Buy Things: Are you a painter or a visual artist? Are you a craft maker or a small business owner? If you are any of these things, then you’ve noticed the recent spike in the number of community organized and CITY organized events that are welcoming craft artists and artisans into the fold, to actually make a buck or two. Crowds are generous these days, even in our economic times – it’s encouraging to hit Civic Plaza, or the Rail Yards and watch as goods are purchased from local folks – left and right.
  4. You’re Always Standing In “Possibility”: What does that mean? That means, if you get up and off the couch, out of the studio, and into the “action,” there’s usually some work to be had or planned. ABQ’s creative community supports itself and each other very well. Go to an art opening, maybe you’ll land your next DJ gig; head to a poetry slam, your next singer song-writer opportunity might develop; hell, buy a ticket to a show, mention you’re going online and see if the band doesn’t reach out for you to open up next time…
  5. Because, Why Not: Why not be an artist in Albuquerque? I’ve known many folks, who, bless their dreams, have moved away to “make it big,” or go somewhere “bigger…” Perhaps bigger isn’t ALWAYS better. Albuquerque small and sometimes difficult as it may be, lays a landscape down for ALL artists to take their shot at carving out even a small niche for themselves. Albuquerque is slow growing, but often times that can be good for a working creative; the pace can be matched and not feel overwhelming. Growing over time isn’t that bad… right? Why not grow into something rather than out of it? Albuquerque is a city all its own – more of a giant town, but the “townies” are pretty damn cool – so why not hang out and make some art? Whatya’ say?