Bita Ghassemi and Nicole Ching, two alumni in the arts space, join us in the Common Room and discuss how they were introduced to the arts and how their identity plays an influential role in their work (2:29). Then, both Bita and Nicole share their experience co-founding their own companies/initiatives (PILLARBOXED STUDIOS and Museum 2050) while working full-time jobs (14:00). Bita reflects on choosing to base herself in Austin, Texas (her hometown) and her first foray into the arts, while Nicole reflects on the inspiration she felt observing other people’s curiosity for the arts during her first museum internship (24:03). Next, Bita and Nicole share their experiences with the arts through the COVID-19 pandemic, including the craze of arts sales and NFTs (39:55). Finally, we discuss other interests that are consuming Bita and Nicole's time, which include thinking about how to make money, not falling into the “starving artist” trope, and following the Olympics and knitting (53:00).
- Museum 2050: https://museum2050.com/
- PILLARBOXED STUDIOS: https://www.instagram.com/pillarboxed/?hl=en
- Nicole: San Luis by Gregory Alan Isakov
- Bita: Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush