Over the last several years, I have had a front row seat in Pittsburgh's efforts to reinvent itself. The neighborhood and business associations are doing all in their power to attract artists to the city's decaying and marginalized neighborhoods. Why? Because the theory is that real estate values rise after artists have moved into an area. Well, maybe not theory. It's happened in other cities and the technique has been used effectively.
Here's the part of the equasion that always gets overlooked. The artist, an integral part of this process, rarely benefits. The artist is there because it is possible to live and work within meager means.
Why can't we, as artists, take advantage of this phenomenon? Why can't we figure out a way to use this to our advantage?