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Studio Current looks for help paying rent at new Pike/Pine home

Moving in (Image: Studio Current)

Moving in (Image: Studio Current)

About six months ago Studio Current moved into its new underground home in the basement of the building housing the Annex Theatre at 11th Ave and E Pike.

The space is bigger with more variety — a multimedia room, a furnished dance space, a raw space, a common area, and a kitchen — but the rent has also “less than doubled.”

“It’s a sweet spot for us, and it’s an art-dedicated building,” said Artistic Director kt Shores.

Shores took over as artistic director at Studio Current in January 2016 after founder Vanessa DeWolf, who personally sponsored the space, stepped down.

Shores is now contributing personally to supplement funds from performances, workshops, and nominal artist fees, to support the space.

But she’s trying to make Studio Current self-sustaining and hopefully, stop charging artists so they can focus on creating.

Shores recently launched an Indiegogo campaign, and 43 backers have contributed more than $6,000 of the $30,000 goal, and the fundraiser ends in 12 days.

Shores is, of course, grateful for the contributions so far but is hoping that the campaign can bring in at least $10,000.

“If we can hit that $10,000, it would make all the difference for us in the next few months,” Shores said.

Funds from the campaign will help to pay Studio Current’s rent, allowing Shores to put her personal resources into updates and repairs to the space.

Shores said those involved with the space are working on grant writing and proceeds from a monthly variety show series beginning April 2 will also go back to Studio Current. Plans for more regular classes and workshops are also in the works with proceeds going to the space and the artists hosting the workshops.

It’s the first time Studio Current has moved toward a more standard model to support itself, which Shores said is difficult because it’s such an underground and fringe art space.

“We literally moved into a basement,” she said with a laugh.

Currently, 10 artists have nine-month residencies at the space and are “deep in their process” creating work, Shores said.

Shores and seven Managing Artist Directors — Corina Dalzell, Syniva Whitney, Laura Aschoff, Markeith Wiley, Angelina Baldoz, and Will Courtney — volunteer their time to run the studio.

Along with its more daring art that more traditional venues don’t typically host, Studio Current is also home to community gatherings and groups like the sock knitters and calligraphers that regularly utilize the space.

“It definitely is a space that is really a community center. All sorts of people come together,” Shores said.

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