Recently chosen as one of the 50 Arts Leaders of Metro Atlanta for 2020 by the Atlanta Regional Commission, Sharon Moskowitz also won the 2020 Wendel Award for Oglethorpe University’s theater department as Most Distinguished Theatre Mom. The talents that make Moskowitz a nurturing Jewish mother find her connecting artists of diverse backgrounds, some more established with different processes in materials and mediums. Her curated shows flow to bring common ground for dialogue and provoke conversations that bring community together. She most recently left the position of managing director of Conant Performing Arts Center at Oglethorpe.
A graduate of the college, where art and music were part of her core classes, Moskowitz grew up with a mother who emphasized painting, piano, dance and theater.
“Raised in Margate, N.J., only a few hours from Philly and NYC, I absorbed art and culture at a very young age. Art simply made me happy, second to the beach! I grew up to be an arts advocate for nonprofits, and now it has become a business of which I am proud.”
When asked to describe her talent, she mused, “I am a classic right-side-of-the- brain ‘creative.’ Visually I am more tactile when explaining a plan or listening to artists. When curating art, I can see the varied work of many artists come together in my mind. We use the logical side too, guiding an artist to work out a plan to find clients. ‘Creative’ seems to win out when producing a show or finding a purchase for a project.”
Basically, as a connector and rep, she matches potential buyers with artists as an advocate and a coach on pricing. She ensures them more time in the studio and less time prospecting. Some of the Jewish artists with whom Moskowitz works are Sophia Sabsowitz, Daniel Mervis, Russell Dreyer, and Susan Proctor.
In terms of Atlanta’s art scene, Moskowitz notes an explosion of artists coming from all segments: informal practice, formal art education and self-taught experience. She notes that the High Museum of Art and galleries are seeking out local and emerging artists.
Moskowitz leans towards larger group shows and collaborative works as opposed to solo shows. She’s now working with a photographer and painter who are collaborating on a series with vivid abstracts requiring a long digitizing and manipulating process of time and talent. “The results are brilliant!” she says.
For those who wish to start collecting art, Moskowitz advises, “Buying artwork from established artists is, no question, very smart. There are excellent galleries that bring in the best artists for a higher price tag and seamless purchase. Buying for a collection is not about how expensive the piece is versus the positive gut feeling from the purchase. Your heart should be happy when you buy. It’s the ‘why.’ Begin the story. Every piece I own has a story of the purchase or about the artist I bought from.”
Moskowitz laughs about her role as a “professional Jewish mother.”
“Whaat, are you kidding me? Can’t help myself. I’m direct, honest and worry occasionally. Artists tend to undervalue themselves, [are] not always organized and never feel finished. The mother (and professional) in me keeps perspective because I am not the artist. I can be objective. I do the research, ask collectors, gallery owners, designers questions. Artists have overhead and supply costs. Their time and talent have to be accounted for.”
When asked what art she admires, Moskowitz added, “I have my eye currently on Shanequa Gay and Alan Loehle. Through studies and in museums, Frida Kahlo comes to mind. Rembrandt caused my first hypnotic trance as a child. My beloved mentor, the incredible Todd Murphy, passed away this year. I regret I didn’t buy one of his iconic dresses, not for the value, but for what it represented. He helped so many emerging artists.
“My three daughters all make fun of how many tchotchkes I collected through the years!”
To learn more about Moskowitz, visit www.srmartconnect.com