This is the 40th anniversary of ArtSpan’s Open Studios, where 800 artists around SF open up their creative space to the public. It’s a fantastic milestone for the organization, and also a biggun for us here at 3 Fish Studios. This is our tenth year (!) participating, and it's been a truly incredible journey.
Here, Eric shares a bit about the huge impact Open Studios has had on 3 Fish Studios over the past decade:
“Our first Open Studios was out of our garage in the Outer Richmond in 2005. Annie and I both had completely different careers at that point, and weren’t sure if we would qualify because we weren’t ‘official’ artists, but one of the great things about it is that anyone can get involved. So we said: ‘What the hell!’ We cleared out the garage and gave it a coat of white paint.
The garage, 2006
And wouldn’t you know it: We opened up our doors and the whole neighborhood came out to see what we were doing. It was a complete surprise: How well attended it was, how much work we sold, and how pleasant it was to connect with our neighbors.
Eric and Annie in the garage, 2006
So we did it again, out of our garage, the following year. It wasn’t soon after that second Open Studios that I thought: “The potential here is pretty clear; let’s dedicate ourselves to opening a business.” I left my job in 2006 and filed papers to open up 3 Fish Studios; Annie quit her job in 2011 to join me full-time.
In fact, our whole business model at 3 Fish Studios is based on Open Studios; inviting the public to get an authentic connection—no smoke and mirrors, no intimidating gallerists—just you and the artists and the work. That’s just the best way to be an artist.
Now I’m on the Board of Directors at ArtSpan, and Open Studios will always be near and dear to my heart. I think it’s one of the things that makes San Francisco incredibly unique—the access to the creative people here. No other city does that.
Original paintings and ceramics made by Annie, 2015
It’s always one of my favorite weekends; a true celebration of the artistic experience in SF. This year Paul Madonna will be with us, and we’ve collaborated on a special print to celebrate the 40th anniversary that combines his best stuff—drawings of local streetscapes—and my destruction of local icons (this time with a massive robot).
Sneak peek of Eric's collaboration with Paul Madonna, 2015
All that, plus: My legendary limited edition cheeseburgers and a full keg of beer. Good times."
Come hang with us the weekend of October 23rd and 24th, from 11am to 6pm!