Member Spotlight: Julia Barry of Habitat: Home
by Molaundo Jones, Social Media Specialist at Fractured Atlas
Julia Barry, along with co-organizers Rev. Adriene Thorne, Dusty Francis, and Dionne McClain-Freeney, is the creator of “Habitat: Home,” a nationwide community-building project powered by art. Through collaborative making and multidisciplinary performances about ‘home,’ artists and residents across America work toward a more peaceful, healthy country. Julia is based in Brooklyn, New York and has been a Fractured Atlas member for almost a year.
How has Fractured Atlas benefitted your artistic practice?
Supporting a career in the arts can be a solitary and draining ongoing job, including time spent submitting many applications to (and getting many rejections from) grants, residencies, competitions, etc. However, keeping at it wholeheartedly is necessary to maintaining a meaningful creative life, and Fractured Atlas is the sunlight coming through the clouds in this arena, providing feedback and suggestions on how to strengthen grant applications sent through their auspices! I am very thankful to have expert help and the feeling of a bolstering community tangibly cheering my work on.
How has Fractured Atlas benefitted your income generation or fundraising efforts (please quantify if possible)?
We are in the middle of crowdfunding via Fractured Atlas’ platform right now! We of course hope to reach — or even better, exceed — our goal, but also feel confident using Fractured Atlas because we can use whatever funds are raised, regardless of this individual campaign’s outcomes. Fractured Atlas also helps us process checks and keep our funds all in one place, with all monies given being helpfully tax-deductible for our donors.
What specific Fractured Atlas services/programs have you used?
General fundraising, crowdfunding, internal support and services, and we plan to use Artful.ly for registering attendees before our events.
Why do you think artists and organizations should become members of Fractured Atlas?
Fractured Atlas is a wonderful resource because it so comprehensively covers all the different needs that artists have from funding to promoting and sharing their work. The Fractured Atlas staff is knowledgeable, available, timely, and encouraging, which helps to remove obstacles and get artists motivated and on to their next step! Practically speaking, being able to provide tax-deductible status to donations is a real selling point for donors, and likely helps artists raise more money for their projects.
What has been one of the biggest challenges for your arts project and how did you push through it?
Our biggest project challenge is the same question as the project was developed to address: How can we surmount and heal social divides? As “Habitat: Home” participants work to shift current power dynamics and biases, we are paradoxically operating from the very system that perpetuates these issues. In recognition of this challenge, we are consciously using the creative process as a framework in which issues of identity, belonging, and human responsibility can be discussed safely and expressed freely.
We are specifically using a collaborative and participant-influenced process to guide healthy communication and work together. While sub-teams of 2–5 artists each make new art together, meetings with the full group are dedicated to learning about, discussing, and practicing collaborative principles, interactive styles, and work strategies and methods. Via an artistic common goal, we have purposely created a new, respectful space in which we can support each other and celebrate our differences. In this way, we can highlight individual cultural producers from diverse backgrounds, while also building community, solidarity, and empathy.
We are also sharing our process and work online and at in-person events to connect a large number of diverse residents in meaningful — and dare we say, fun— experiences. Overall, we aim to enact and spark a new way forward for resident-led American revitalization. Let’s inspire courage, hope, and civic action together!
Do you have any upcoming events that people should know about?October 19, 2019 @ 6pm: Performance at St. Michael’s Church, 225 W 99th St, New York, NY 10025.
October 20, 2019 @ 6pm: Performance at First Presbyterian Church of Brooklyn Sanctuary — 124 Henry St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Both events are free and open to all! We also plan to web-stream them for community members at home. (Details forthcoming.)
What is your biggest accomplishment as a result of being a Fractured Atlas member?
Bringing “Habitat: Home” to life!
You can learn more about and follow Habitat: Home at http://habitathome.us and on social media on Facebook @habitathomeus, on Instagram at @habitathomeus; on Twitter at @habitathomeus; and on YouTube: http://bit.ly/youtube-hhus; and on Fundraising By Fractured Atlas at http://habitathome.us/makechange