Houston’s Caroline Collective to Close, Not Related to Recent Shooting

by Paula Newton August 3, 2013

Caroline CollectiveThe Caroline Collective, a co-working and art studio/gallery space will shut its doors in September after five years, reports CultureMap Houston. Co-creator Ned Dodington says that the decision is not related to the attempted robbery of a Caroline Collective member on Thursday morning, which made the news when the unnamed member shot two of the robbery suspects. “This is all completely amicable,” Dodington told CultureMap. “We launched the project knowing that, if it became time to develop the property, we would explore other options.”

Co-working is a recent trend that is meant to meet the business needs of independent contractors/entrepreneurs and to promote creative collaboration. The Caroline Collective threw artists and nonprofit arts organizations into the mix, with the mission to “positively impact the cultural landscape of Houston.”

“Right now,” says Dodington, “we’re looking to find the best solutions so our members aren’t left in the lurch.” At this time, these plans may include starting a Houston branch of The HUB, a Vienna-based “incubator” with a more global idea of collaboration.

Meanwhile, as amicable as the agreement may have been, the closure identifies yet another neighborhood where real estate developers have followed grass roots arts organizations and stirred up enough excitement to make it financially unviable for the organizations to stay.


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Sandy Clopec August 4, 2013 - 12:13

Right for artist’s to bare arms.

I really like that you wrote that last paragraph. Artist’s should develop something similar to a union and protect themselves because this happens everywhere, and it has been happening for years. Paul Kittelson and Carter Ernst did it the right way, and other artists followed. No developers are going to be kicking them out anytime soon.

{then again, maybe best kept secrets are best kept secret}

Robert Boyd August 4, 2013 - 14:26

Sandy, what artists should do is what many Houston artists have done for decades–buy as opposed to rent. They should buy cheap buildings in depressed neighborhoods and live/work in them. The artists who pioneered this in Montrose and Rice Military and elsewhere now have valuable assets. Artists who rent end up with nothing but higher rent.

Bill Davenport August 4, 2013 - 20:44

This goes for organizations, too. Lawndale, which owns its beautiful building, is sitting pretty, while Diverseworks moved and fragmented, and CSAW is plain gone. Box 13 should buy its building now, if it’s not too late.

Pat Gasper August 7, 2013 - 13:58

It is easy for someone to say “buy cheap buildings”, now point one out. I would have to buy one in Boerne, TX…no wait, it is too expensive there too. No emerging artist can afford to buy a building in Houston; but if there is some young (trust fund fed) artist who can afford it, he or she won’t share the wealth and give other artists a place to work or show. Pretty much truth

Good point on Box 13, it would be nice if that place wasn’t out of their range.


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