Dayton, Ohio is a city of abundance. Our diverse communities of visual and performing artists include inspired and talented visionaries rich in time and energy. We share a heritage of invention and creativity. Our real estate economy is flooded with empty buildings and cheap rent.
Put these elements together, add a little idealistic vision from people like Laurana Wong and we have “The Circus, Community Art Center Extraordinare.” What is possible is more than just a bunch of artists living and working in their own space. The Circus, as a vibrant collective and center for accessible community art could alter the direction of an entire city.
Hopes run high for the project. Ideas abound. So many people. So many different visions. So many different lives. So many different decisions to make. What kind of building should the Circus buy? What does the Circus mean by art? What community would the Circus serve? Should the Circus be a business or a nonprofit? Who is writing the business plan? What is a business plan? Where does the money come from when established arts nonprofits are running into hard times?
These are tough questions. Stakeholders want answers, fast. How the Circus answers these questions may be even more important than the first round of answers.