Jill Benson, Executive Director of Sage Community Arts in downtown Sheridan, WY is excited to bring a diversity of art to the community.
Celebrating their fourth year of business, Benson explains, “So, what we do for our member artists is that we’re that platform for either new artists that are transitioning into figuring out how they’re going to sell their art. Or we also see the flip side of those who’ve really been showing in a lot of galleries all over, and they want to kind of come home and condense a little bit. So, we take the new business burden off of them, and so it changes out about four times a year, culminating in a final show where the members get to take over both galleries. And so it’s about 85% of immediately local within the two counties here, Sheridan and Johnson County. And then we have a lot of snowbirds or others from our national shows that have wanted to become members because they really like the vision that we’re trying to do here, building and inspiring communities through the visual arts. And so we do see work from across the states from California to New York, Montana to Texas.”
As the Executive Director, Benson is passionate about having a diversity of art in the community.
Benson’s says, “Art is such a platform to open up different sort of conversations. And so if we can really expand what those keys are to ignite some different conversations, the more diverse that is, the more diverse our conversations can be to really expand our views and broaden our minds of what we can see and how to approach different problems and really build out our community as well.”
Benson feels fortunate to see the diversity of artists.
“We’ll see someone who is very much your very traditional cowboy and then a very progressive nouveau young artist coming in and they might think they have nothing in common. But they connect over that one piece and you can see that you might not meet in any other circle. But that piece, they connected with. And then, once that’s the tether to where we can further grow our communities. So being able to expand what we show here is we can give a new platform for the artists coming in to show to a new community. And then the flip side, for our community to be able to see different ideas, different perspectives, to just grow a more rich and vibrant community for everyone.”
Benson believe that art is not just beauty, but that art is educational, transformative, healing, and art is a medium that transcends all walks of life.
For more information, check out Sage Arts.