John W. Bateman
Affordable art doesn’t mean buying that French poster with the black cat. It doesn’t mean watching old releases on Amazon or Netflix. It also doesn’t mean skipping your utility bills for six months to buy something the size of a coaster or shelling out $150 for a single ticket to a Broadway show.
Original art is affordable and right in your backyard.
Perhaps you like that print that your bff has in the kitchen. There’s nothing wrong with buying what you love to make your space… yours. But if you buy that print because you think original art is simply out of reach... then hold off. Wait before you drop $300 on that framed poster you saw while thumbing the furniture catalogue at the dentist office. The nitrous oxide may convince you it’s a steal, but you have alternatives.
Find something original, new, and local. Check out the Cotton District Arts Festival (or any of the other festivals here in North Mississippi) and pick up some fantastic work at a price point that might surprise you. Consider the added benefit: buy from an art student and fund a college education. Being an art patron doesn’t require a trust fund at a Swiss bank, just a little courage to step away from the catalogue and meet a local artist.
Maybe film is your favorite art form. Look at the published line ups from any one of the state’s several film festivals. Many of the festivals offer summaries and ratings to help you decide what’s great for the kids (or the nephews and nieces), what’s great for date night, or what’s simply worth a late night film binge. By now, films in last year’s regional festivals have often made their way to iTunes, Netflix, GooglePlay and other streaming platforms. You may find an amazing documentary or Mississippi-made horror flick for far less than the bushel of popcorn at the theatre you’ll end up spilling anyway. Want something free? Check out Classic Movie Night at Starkville Public Library.
If music is your jam, don’t overlook the Starkville-MSU Symphony. Did you know that their concerts are free? Now you do. Be sure to check their schedule here.
Art isn’t out of reach. You might just find that Mississippi-made magic you’ve been seeking.
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