Masereel Centrum

Submitted by lmcshane on Thu, 07/05/2007 - 07:27.

My sister and her husband just returned from an arts residency at Masereel Centrum.  This is a photo of the lovely courtyard and living quarters provided to the artists.  The deadline to apply for next year is August 1st, 2007.  Art residencies...hmmm...what an idea???  Where do artists want to live while they are in Cleveland??

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Art Colony in Cleveland?

I've often thought an artist colony in Cleveland would have a positive impact on any struggling neighborhood willing to take on the project. If you take a look at the history of artists colonies, especially urban examples, it is easy to see that they often provide the tipping point for the economic revitalization of a depressed community. HUD offers buildings/houses for $1.00 to non-profit organizations. Artists united with a vision and a bit of gumption could easily find space in this city of foreclosed properties. Look at what is happening regarding art colonies and residencies elsewhere, especially in NYC and Europe. Here is an interesting link to Res Artis, an organization that would support such an initiative.

Hmmm...artists rehabbing East Cleveland multi-family residences, working in studios at the Star complex....


My dream would come true...

I picture that and also see artists (including programmers, musicians, craftspeople, etc.) taking over many of the old storefronts on Euclid and Superior and working and selling there and living above, with other artists. And, most exciting, I see the potential in all of this of driving a new arts and crafts movement out of those neighborhoods of East Cleveland and Cleveland that would influence design and architecture in the region and world - art tiles, glass blocks and other details made and featured in a big way here - "Cleveland School" - could be picked up world-wide. The Star neighborhood has the low cost, great location and scale of opportunity (vacancy) to offer space for such a major movement. My dream for all of this...

Disrupt IT

Where to find artist communities

Here is another link to a great website: The Alliance of Artist Communities 


This page contains lists of all the states where artist communities can be found. Notice there are no listings for the state of Ohio.

Houses for $1.00

Do you have any information on HUD transfers for a $1.00? I seem to remember this applied in Syracuse, when I lived there in the 1990s.

Hud Homes for $1.00


Here is the link to the  HUD $1 homes 

An excerpt:

HUD's Dollar Homes initiative helps local governments to foster housing opportunities for low to moderate income families and address specific community needs by offering them the opportunity to purchase qualified HUD-owned homes for $1 each.

Dollar Homes are single-family homes that are acquired by the Federal Housing Administration (which is part of HUD) as a result of foreclosure actions. Single-family properties are made available through the program whenever FHA is unable to sell the homes for six months.

By selling vacant homes for $1 after six months on the market, HUD makes it possible for communities to fix up the homes and put them to good use at a considerable savings. The newly occupied homes can then act as catalysts for neighborhood revitalization, attracting new residents and businesses to an area.

Local governments can partner with local nonprofit homeownership organizations or tap into existing local programs to resell the homes to low- and moderate-income residents of the community.

To find out if properties are available for sale in your community, visit HUD Homes and click on your state.

because it's cheap and low hassle


The one thing we must remember is the reason art areas start up in the first place: They're cheap. The value proposition is usually the first thing that attracts--lots of old space with cachet and classic appurtenances, and available at reasonable rates.  By the time a city gets involved in declaring someplace an art district, the prices are usually getting way too high to appeal to the arts community, and you get the posers and the wannabees.

East Cleveland seems to have the price points right, and there's also a lot of space in existing commercial and residential opportunities. Location, too, makes East Cleveland a gem--lots of public transportation, on major highways, close to educational institutions. It's important to keep all these developers and city planners and nonprofits at arms length as much as possible. They really ruin a neighborhood for the authentic creative types. Their scale is all wrong--it has to be too large initially to support their involvement, in the manner to which they've become accustomed.

We have to remember which comes first; you don't declare a place a district and hope they will come. This is the approach you see around here most often, and it makes little sense. You make people welcome and let them grow the place quietly for you. Privately. Entre nous.

Food for thought

Selfishly, my wish would be that my neighborhood should benefit from an influx of young artists.  We have the empty former Brooklyn YMCA, which could be converted and would provide recreational facilities and access to the Cleveland Metroparks, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Steelyard Commons and ALDIs (so familiar to Europeans).  Also, graduating CIA students could be put up and provide assistance to Art House until they get their bearings in the art world.  Or Metrohealth residencies...
But, believe me, I would be happy to see this happen anywhere in Cleveland.  Anywhere!!  Thanks for the links...this merits more research and application.  For anyone reading this--check out Garden Court.  There is a complex of buildings for sale $350,000. 


Laura, might those things being offered for $350K have something to do with John Hickey? Are they in the MLS, and if so, do you have a link?

Crazy speculators

Yes--Tim.  Hickey owns the lot of them.  No MLS as far as I know, just a sign on the side of the building offering 4 properties including the brick commercial building facing Pearl. 

Dirt cheap

It seems that the feeding frenzy for fire sale properties is starting to develop in Brooklyn Centre a la Tremont's pattern of development.  Auction signs are popping up and one developer picked up a burn-down on my street.  Is this a good or bad process for urban renewal?  I hate being caught in the malestrom of Section 8 buying, running the property into the ground, mystery fires and then resale for higher end rentals.  How many of my neighbors are only in it for the sell-out?  I lived through this in Tremont.  I only hope to come out of this in one piece with my sanity intact.

we aren't exactly thrilled . . .

. . . with these auction signs popping up. It brings in a sort of no-hands-on speculation that is unhealthy. I think we can probably get a handle on it, though, if we work together and have some help from the housing court, early on. The tide's about to turn to favor the stakeholders here, on the ground. HUD, hedge funds, and mortgage servicers cannot be allowed to gut our neighborhoods and our equity any longer; the party's over.