Editor’s note: Gimme 5 is a five-question interview about a topic of local interest.
Title: Jackie Boos, business partner of Artisan Forge Studios, along with founder Greg Johnson.
Talks about: Art Industry Roundtable.
When: Noon to 1 p.m. Thursday.
Where: Artisan Forge Studios, 1106 Mondovi Road.
More information: facebook.com/events/1961314510823782/
Is this roundtable the first of its kind that you two have organized?
No, and actually, we are guests of Western Dairyland.
Western Dairyland puts on these roundtable lunch discussions and they do after-hour tours.
They approached us and asked if we could put on a roundtable discussion because of what we've accomplished in the last two years.
What are those accomplishments?
The creation of Artisan Forge Studios not only as a mission, but a physical building as well.
When we started it was vacant and we turned it into a hub for artists to work independently and collectively. And we are establishing our mission of fostering creativity, collaboration, education and community.
Who is the roundtable aimed toward?
It is aimed toward anybody who is in entrepreneurship or arts enthusiasts.
We have a lot of people who are great creators but aren't great business people.
They don't know how to promote themselves, or they just don't have time to create that foundation they need in order to be successful.
We create a model in which they can still create and do their own thing, but we are there to help with all those other items they might not be good at: web sites, social media and creating events.
What will the discussions focus on?
They will probably focus on starting a business of this type of caliber, which might be another model toward what Artisan Forge Studios is, or just talking about how to establish a career.
If they’re already in a career, it’s how they can bring it to the next level.
They're surrounding themselves in a community. How can they look at other opportunities that might exist right here in the Chippewa Valley that they haven't seen? What's the next step? What's the long game of what you want to do? We will probably focus a lot on that.
What do you hope comes of the roundtable event?
What I selfishly hope is we can have some great conversations and talk about ways to create new events we haven't yet tackled.
We have had people looking at us, and I think when creative minds are around the table they are able to bring up some really great ideas.
Greg (Johnson) and I have always looked at Artisan Forge as a machine. Now that the machine is full, we need to generate ideas to either create more attraction toward what's going on inside our walls or what's going on in Eau Claire specifically.
— Lauren French, reporter