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View over Buschwick (Brooklyn)

Letter from New York 0

Linda Ruciņa, emerging artist

New York City, the immediate association that comes to mind is great art, great design and many glamorous moments. I have seen the New York art scene from different perspectives and I’m still learning and observing it every day. I have always been interested in art, ever since I was a kid, therefore I never questioned my interest to have a career in art. During my last year in high school I had to make my first career-influencing decision between moving to San Francisco or New York; I chose New York. A major part in this decision-making was played by what I had heard of its great art scene.

My experience with the so-called art scene started to develop in college:  I received my Bachelors Degree in Fine Arts, at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, where I was faced with the competitive spirit of New York City. While attending Pratt Institute, I wanted to explore other opportunities and I was very curious as to what will await me after graduation, therefore I volunteered my time as an intern in an emerging gallery, museums, and artists' studios. It was a real challenge to balance time between studio work, other coursework and internships. Currently, I work at the Museum of Arts and Design and pursue my career in installation art, and I’m faced with common challenge of an artist -- balancing a full time job with studio practice. 

New York City is a chosen destination for many recent and expectation-filled graduates from many art schools as well as ambitious, talented, and emerging artists, but unfortunately most do not even get close to making it in the art world. It’s not just the talent that is needed for success, it's many hours of labor, dedication as well as various side jobs to support yourself. The most difficult challenge might be the ability to find motivation and time to focus on your art work when you are faced with everyday troubles. 

 The most fascinating side of the art world, here in New York, is the art gallery district Chelsea, where there are over three hundred art galleries and every Thursday night exhibition openings take place where all are welcomed to mingle with the artists and to observe the new masterpieces.  It’s the attractive and glamorous side of the art world and everyone wants to be involved in it, especially in the gallery scene. One of the ways to do so is to volunteer your time as an intern which is a great opportunity given to students and recent graduates to get hands-on experience in the field, as well as to network. However internships are not paid and a great deal of administrative help in the galleries and museums is executed by many volunteers or underpaid newcomers to the scene.