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View Poll Results: Which has the better art scene?
Chicago 28 73.68%
Philadelphia 10 26.32%
Voters: 38. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-19-2014, 08:54 AM
 
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So I'm thinking of relocating to one of these two places. I've come to this conclusion based partly on affordability (which is pretty necessary for an emerging artist) and location - I'm originally from the Midwest and just don't think I can leave the seasons (like I might in Miami or San Francisco).

I'm wondering if anyone has the inside scoop on the art scenes at either of these places. I'd like to establish a career here - like a home base - and not move around too much. So it's important to me that there are opportunities for young artists (lots of them) as well as opportunities for even more established artists.

I'll give an example of what I don't want - I previously lived in Cleveland, OH, and while I liked it there for the time being, there's no way I could create the kind of practice I really want to create in Cleveland. There are only really a handful of galleries in the area that would even show art from emerging artists like myself, and the work I make is kind of racy, so that slims the number down even further. In the end, we're looking at something like one show a year in Cleveland, if I'm lucky. This is just not a sustainable kind of thing if I really want to make a name for myself - ya know?

Any other advice/suggestion recommended. Thanks!
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Auburn, New York
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Chicago has a lot more going on in terms of the arts. There are dozens of cool, small galleries in the Wicker Park and Andersonville neighborhood, and bigger galleries closer to downtown. I don't know if you're racy work might appeal to a ***** audience, but if so there'd be venues to showcase your work in Boystown. If you're also crafty, Chicago has a huge market for locally-made furniture.

There are fewer artists and art venues in Philly. And, the art scene in Philly seems to be more geared toward old money, so your racy work may not be embraced as well as it could be in other cities.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:11 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia, PA
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Originally Posted by Dawn.Davenport View Post
Chicago has a lot more going on in terms of the arts. There are dozens of cool, small galleries in the Wicker Park and Andersonville neighborhood, and bigger galleries closer to downtown. I don't know if you're racy work might appeal to a ***** audience, but if so there'd be venues to showcase your work in Boystown. If you're also crafty, Chicago has a huge market for locally-made furniture.

There are fewer artists and art venues in Philly. And, the art scene in Philly seems to be more geared toward old money, so your racy work may not be embraced as well as it could be in other cities.
Ever hear of Old City? Clearly not.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Auburn, New York
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Originally Posted by Summersm343 View Post
Ever hear of Old City? Clearly not.
I know Philly well. I know there are lots of galleries in Old City, some near Rittenhouse, and there's an up-and-coming art scene in Northern Liberties. Philly is a step up from the Cleve, but Chicago offers more.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:25 PM
 
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Chicago may have a slightly better arts scene, but Philadelphia is about 90 miles south of arguably the art capital of the world, NYC.
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Old 01-19-2014, 10:41 PM
 
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Thats a good point bones. Im wondering how much philly's location with nyc will matter. Consider that I may or may not have a car, and that ill be working my day job/in my studio in philly - I mean I may never even make it up to nyc. But who knows - maybe this is a better long term (wayy long term) decision? Like maybe it will make networking into the nyc art world easier? Anyone thoughts?
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Old 01-20-2014, 02:48 AM
 
Location: West Hollywood
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Originally Posted by Frank Bones View Post
Chicago may have a slightly better arts scene, but Philadelphia is about 90 miles south of arguably the art capital of the world, NYC.
Okay then.

So then they should just live in New York.

In this case, Chicago, I love the galleries in River North.
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Old 01-20-2014, 03:41 AM
 
Location: Chicago =)
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River North supposedly has the largest concentration of art galleries outside of Manhattan. There are a lot of them in Wicker Park and Pilsen as well.

I can't say I'm too familiar with the Philly art scene though.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:13 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Nafster View Post
Okay then.

So then they should just live in New York.

In this case, Chicago, I love the galleries in River North.
It's a lot easier to live off your art in Philadelphia. Rent in NYC is insane. I would guess rent is cheaper in Philly than Chicago too.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:30 AM
 
275 posts, read 298,261 times
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Originally Posted by featherlight53 View Post
Thats a good point bones. Im wondering how much philly's location with nyc will matter. Consider that I may or may not have a car, and that ill be working my day job/in my studio in philly - I mean I may never even make it up to nyc. But who knows - maybe this is a better long term (wayy long term) decision? Like maybe it will make networking into the nyc art world easier? Anyone thoughts?
It's 1.5 hours via Amtrak and 2 hours via Megabus. The bus fare is very cheap - usually a few dollars each way.

I would guess there is some overlap between the NYC and Philly art worlds. This is certainly the case for writers, but I'm not sure about artists. You might want to reach out artists living in Philadelphia to answer this question.
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