AngelaJossy's Blog

Oct. 11, 2009 at 11:48am


Just in time for Halloween: The scariest best thing I've ever done

Speakeasy Arts Cooperative - here's how it works: 

We invite all sorts of art forms: music, sculpture, paintings, photography, jewelry, fashion, acting, poetry, crafts, recycled/repurposed, literary, healing arts, dancing and lots of other things along those lines. We have about 12 members so far and we are aiming for at least 25.

The artists pays $100 plus a share of the utilities and dedicates at least 10 hours a month to working for Speakeasy. They must make at least a 6 month commitment. They get paid every two weeks at our membership meeting for whatever of theirs that sold. Speakeasy takes 0% of the artists sales. They are entitled to do one event at Speakeasy per month as long as its scheduled in advance and doesn't interfere with any of our weekly events (music lessons, acting workshops, yoga classes and etc.)

NOTE: The beautiful two story Speakeasy venue is also available to non-members for a small rental and cleaning fee. Great for parties, meetings, music shows, movies, dinners and etc. 

Several people have expressed a strong desire to join but are worried about the $100 a month commitment. If this is you, let me just say that there are local festivals that charge more than that for one day and our members get a whole month. We will all work together to invite people to the store to help each other get more sales. You know it won't sell sitting in your basement. I also plan to invite people from the community to give little workshops on various business skills. I like to think of this as an incubator for artists.

We are in a prime location. While we've been down there working lots of people have poked there heads in to the space and we had NOTHING in there yet! When McMenamin's moves in a half a block away we'll have even more foot traffic. Its the right place at the right time.

I won't pressure anyone into joining because I think that is a decision people have to make for themselves and I realize its scary to put yourself out there like that but when I got laid off and didn't know how I was going to pay my bills I personally decided to invest in myself rather than going to work for another employer who could pull the rug out from under me at any moment if things got rough. So far its worked out pretty good for me and I've never been happier or more fulfilled. Speakeasy is a very visible platform for artists to get noticed. Its also a great  opportunity to learn from other artists how to market yourself. It will take risk. It will take hard work. But I have never heard of any opportunity this great with this little investment.

We've already been in most of the major publications in town and we haven't even opened yet!

Check out what they are saying about us:

Tacoma News Tribune Oct. 9:

Tacoma News Tribune Oct. 6:

Tacoma News Tribune Oct. 7:

FeedTacoma Oct, 7:

Weekly Volcano Sept. 3:

City Arts Magazine - October issue - last page Curators Eye column (story not available online - its in print only)

For more information or application for membership, visit


DON'T FORGET! We are having a Halloween party on Oct. 24th at 8 pm. It starts off with a live auction of ART DOORS to benefit Tacoma Art Place and the rest of the night we dance down stairs and lounge upstairs in the mezzanine which will be totally decked out in a moraccan livingroom/opium den theme. Admission is free!


I really appreciate all the community support we have received on this project. Everywhere I go people tell me how excited they are about Speakeasy Arts Cooperative. They have even been asking what we need and how they can help so I put together a list of wants and needs.

Here are the things we need but I haven't had time to acquire yet:

1) Two cash registers
2) New carpet the same size as the grey and stained carpet at the top of the stairs
3) Front counter and/or bar
4) 16 sturdy attractive matching chairs for the bistro tables
5) Black or red theater curtains for stage backdrop (and for front window some of the time)
6) Panic bar for St. Helen's door
7) Fire door for our upper exit ( I think our landlord has one for me but he's on vacation right now so I have to wait and see)
8) Approximately 160 feet of hanging rails (sturdy trim)
9) Wire and hooks for hanging art
10) Money or sponsorship for printing posters & fliers
11) Ballasts for the fluorescent lighting fixtures
12) Schlage electronic combination lock from the TV commercial -
13) Vending machines (for soda pop and snacks)

If you have leads on getting any of the above items let me know.

comments [2]  |  posted under , art, cooperative, membership, Speakeasy, Tacoma


by fredo on 10/11/2009 @ 12:21pm
lots of the stuff you want is available on craigs list, cheap. used counters, restaurant equiment and point of sale equipment try ehli auctions. vending machines you can probably get from a local bottler, call around. ballasts for fluorescent fixtures are a pain in the butt to replace but you can get them at lowes, make sure you have the power off when you switch them out or you will get a nasty surprise. good luck angie.

by L.S.Erhardt on 10/11/2009 @ 10:14pm

Do go on... You got my attention now