Artist Who Can’t Stand New York Studio Prices? Live in a Mobile Work Space

Artist Who Can’t Stand New York Studio Prices? Live in a Mobile Work Space
Arts & Culture

A combined promotional and activist project put on by the Queens Museum helps budding artists manage their humble beginnings and find inspiration on the go

Jason Brick
  • 4 august 2015

Creatives and artists are gaining attention with Queens Museum’s Studio in the Park: The Queens Museum-ArtBuilt Mobile Studio Residency Program to raise awareness of New York City’s rising studio prices. The project has two different artists working from June through August 2015, in separate month intervals, inside a 150 square foot trailer at Flushing Meadows Corona park.

This program was made possible by the partnership with ArtBuild and NYC Parks department. ArtBuild creates small mobile work spaces that are affordable on a budding artist’s income. Making them mobile allows an artists to visit new places for inspiration.

ArtBuild is a collaborative partnership between NYC-based nonprofit ArtBuilding and ArtHome, which helps struggling artists find studios.

ArtBuild and partners work with artists by teaching them business and financial skills. Like many graduates and talents with art training, New York artists are bright enough to learn financial skills but were never exposed to the basis a business or management major would have learned during freshman year.


Two artists are taking part in the pilot promotion for the trailer project. Patric Rowe used the mobile studio from June 15 to July 15 while working on his “Peoples’ Design Laboratory” project. Rowe is an artist and educator who works with long-term community projects exploring culture, knowledge and how people collaborate.

The trailer is currently the home base of Matthew Jensen, who will use it to work on “A Collection of Walks” through August 16. Jensen is a photographer, and his current project involves photographing public locations with an eye towards changes and the growing role of technology.

artbuilt mobile studios

So far, the project has been a success. During Rowe’s tenure, he used the opportunity to engage with park visitors about art, collaboration and the project in general. Jensen has actively invited visitors to join him in the studio to share his work-in-progress, and directed those interested to experience his photographed locations first hand.

With the pilot still in progress, there has been little word about whether or not they will expand into offering the studios as a workable, widespread alternative for New York artists.

Bottom Two Photos: Esther Robinson

+Flushing Meadows Corona park
+Queens Museum
+Raise Awareness

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