What’s the Best City for Artists?

Nashville map 4A number of years ago when my husband and I were visiting the Boston area, we were invited to a casual dinner with new acquaintances. Early in the evening, as we were getting to know others at dinner, the “where are you from” question came up. The discussion evolved into a comparison of east and west coast living when someone turned to my husband and asked him, “Which coast are you from?” With a smile, he responded, “There is something in the middle you know.”

My husband grew up in Michigan.

Let’s face it; in this country we typically look to the coasts for new ideas and endeavors. It’s been that way for years, and will continue I’m sure.

The good news for artists and designers is that there’s a groundswell of creativity coming from the rest of the nation. From the Northwest to the Midwest to the South, creatives are discovering wonderful, welcoming, and less expensive communities in which to live and thrive. Even better news; many of these communities have first-rate art colleges nearby. Perhaps it’s a case of the chicken or the egg; I don’t know which came first but the outcome is beneficial either way.

15 Cities for Creative 20-Somethings is a great starting point for researching up-and-coming artistic havens. Read the post to see if any of them grab you. And while you’re at it, check out nearby art colleges and programs. I’ve listed a sampling of public and private art programs near some of these artistically-minded cities, but suggest you do your own homework to learn what each community and college has to offer.

University of Texas at Austin  – Austin, TX
Oregon College of Art & Craft, Pacific NW College of Art   –  Portland, OR
University of Louisville (excellent glass program)  –  Louisville, KY
College for Creative Studies  –  Detroit, MI
Carnegie Mellon University  –  Pittsburgh, PA

One more thing; I’d like to amend the list to 16 Cities, and add Columbus, Ohio. I know I’m biased, but this city does have a lot to offer all types of creatives. And, CCAD is a great career launching pad for future artists and designers.

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