It’s the beginning of spring and in the mornings the fog lays low and heavy across the redwoods. A group of queer artists are gathered on the dining hall deck, coffee in hand, as Rik Lee demonstrates how to create little plaster trolls from some casts he has brought. Inside, Thor and Joe lead a guided discussion on how to talk about impact as artists, looking glamorous in their wigs and lashes. Some listen and take notes while others take it in while they knit or weave. It’s March 2016 and it’s our second annual Muse, a retreat for queer creatives.
Muse is our first big event of the year, with more than 60 people attending last year. We created it to build a space for LGBTQ* artists of all types to come together, share art, grow skills, and be inspired. Art has the potential to inspire all of us towards a better world, and we feel by helping queer artists grow stronger we can help them create a larger impact in the world. And, it’s been a smashing success. People leave Muse feeling a renewed excitement for their art, with new ideas brewing, and access to new friends and resources.
Groundswell Institute is a place for queers to come and be inspired. Whether this be inspiration to seek community, creativity, or connection with nature, we hope that to be a space for these explorations. With MUSE, our annual retreat for queer creatives, we will delve deep with our theme “Inspire.”
What gets you all artistically hot and bothered?
Who helped inspire your queer artistry?
Where do you go to seek inspiration?
MUSE is a one-of-a-kind retreat for queer creatives of all types. No matter what your art or skill level you are welcome.
Cassandra gives the opening presentation for the conference
We will be working up a series of posts reflecting back on our first year of programs and gatherings here at Groundswell. We decided that we would start not at the beginning, but rather at the end of the year, with our most recent original program, the West Coast Communities Conference. This gathering was unique for us, in that it was both more workshop focused and also our only program not focused on the LGBTQ community (though plenty of the community was there). Read more