A Shaker Chair, the Greeks, and a Critical Path

Essential Arts is a response to the inescapable truth that our communities--local and global--are facing unprecedented challenges. Whatever political stripe, people agree that things are broken.

What can fix it? More government? Less government? Manufacturing? Education? Communication? Charitable service? A moral shift?

What we know is this: our current problems require vision to sort through the issues, and some kind of fluency to articulate a path to success. There are social problems, indeed, but creative solutions.

Essential Arts intends therefore to merge two disciplines generally separated: social service and the arts. The inspiration comes from practical experience and also from the Greek notion of "arete," a notion of quality, or virtue, in which each object and action has an ideal expression.

Like a Shaker chair--which was built with the intention that an angel might come sit in it--everything we make and do can be infused again with this sense of purpose, quality, and intention. This is at once an artistic and social pursuit, one which Essential Arts aims to revitalize.

Our programs will combine arts with themes of food, shelter, and community, with the goal of measurable results and a real difference for our communities small and large.