Bataclan and Hyde give paintings away

Boston-based artist Bren Bataclan is giving 30 paintings away in San Francisco as an antidote to the recession. “I think as an artist during this downturn this is the best way that I can help out – to just spread cheer and be positive,” Bataclan told Channel 7’s Terry McSweeney. Bataclan attaches a note to each painting saying “everything’s going to be alright,” and instructing the viewer to help themselves to the painting. He’s given away work in 20 U.S. cities and 20 different countries – usually near where there’s been bad economic news, maybe an unemployment office, or a company that’s had layoffs. But if the artist sends press releases to the media about the project, is he really giving it away? He’s expecting payment, just not from the people who adopt the work. In contrast to Batalan’s approach, Colorado-based Nicole Hyde started a similar, but less media-savvy, project in 2006 called Finders! Keepers? which she describes as sending a “message in a bottle.” She numbered and packaged her small paintings, then left them in a public place “somewhere on the planet.” People who find them should contact her by email so that she can track them on her blog.

One Comment

  1. Thank you so much for mentioning my wee project on your blog. I love what Bren is doing — what any of those artists are doing with similar projects to ours — for that matter.

    Putting art out into the community on such a basic level gives me great joy and perhaps that’s a selfish motivation (hence the “less media savvy”). LOL

    I just know that when I move about the world, I keep my eyes open and alert, looking for someone else’s little planted treasures. I’d love to find one myself.

    Happy New Year to one and all.

    Nicole Hyde

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