Austin's Rubber Repertory Wins National Arts Entrepreneurship Award

Fractured Atlas gives a prestigious nod to Our Boys in Kansas

The Pilot Balloon Church-House
The Pilot Balloon Church-House

Josh Meyer and Matt Hislope, ladies and gentlemen: The co-directors of Rubber Repertory.

Creative, yes.

But … entrepreneurial?

"The idea of being considered entrepreneurs and especially of winning an award for it feels delightfully alien to us," says Meyer, "almost as if someone were to give us an award for baking or linguistics."

The multidisciplinary arts powerhouse called Rubber Repertory is, you may recall, currently hosting artist residencies in a former church that's smack dab in the midst of Lawrence, Kansas. Dozens of artists from all across the country have come to the Pilot Balloon Church-House for a two-week, labor-intensive, partly subsidized stay; dozens more will continue to visit, working on their various endeavors and enjoying a sort of creative cross-pollination of ideas, until the project (which began last August) ends in July of this year.

The Pilot Balloon Church-House. It is for this amazing, yearlong, artist-empowering, nationally inclusive achievement that Fractured Atlas has honored our seemingly indefatigible Rubber Rep Boys with one of the first five Arts Entrepreneurship Awards.

[Note: The other four winners are Chicago's Creative Partners, Pennsylvania's Higherglyphics, and New York's ArtHome and Of a Kind.]

And what, exactly, is this "Fractured Atlas" that considers itself sufficiently magisterial as to bestow awards? You should know, because the New York-based organization (which also lends its support to Austin's Rude Mechs, Fusebox Festival, and others) is the country’s largest arts service organization, reaching more than 250,000 artists and groups in all 50 states and all 435 congressional districts. Dedicated to empowering artists with the support they need to work effectively and thrive, Fractured Atlas provides funding, insurance, technology, education, and other services critical to building sustainable careers and networks.

We mean, see here: Fractured Atlas.

"Fractured Atlas was also our fiscal sponsor for most of our time in Austin," adds Josh Meyer, "and the people there do incredible work for artists."

So. People … who do incredible work for artists?

Yes, well. As the Pilot Balloon Church-House itself and the award the project's now garnered certainly attest: It takes one to know one, Mr. Meyer.

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