arts and pop culture | January 06, 2013

Molly Crabapple: Take Control Of Your Own Life To Succeed In The Art World

"I believe in following your dreams, being incredibly passionate, and being ruthlessly practical about what it takes to get there," Molly Crabapple says in an exclusive Lavin interview. Crabapple is the founder of Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School, an artist, and a writer. In the interview, she shares her advice on how to make it in the cutthroat art world based on her own personal experiences doing just that. "It is absolutely possible to make a living on your passion," she explains, but you can only do so if you are willing to forgo traditional models of achieving that goal.

"You can no longer depend on the larger institutions to shape your future," she adds. While many creative people are told to simply "visualize their dreams" in order reach their goals, or to be content to forgo the business side of things because their art will speak for itself—Crabapple disagrees. She advises burgeoning creative types to "take control of their own lives" and put themselves out there in innovative and disruptive ways because there are few large institutions out there that will do it for you. The artist of the future, she argues, will be passionate in what they do—and rely on themselves alone to achieve success.

Known for her disruptive projects, Crabapple's work runs the gamut from a live event where she transformed a hotel room into an art piece in front of a live Internet audience, to articles she contributed to CNN and Vice magazine about the Spanish general strike and Occupy Wall Street. Her work is innovative and highly regarded, and she often speaks to audiences about the importance of striking out on your own, never asking permission, and following your passions.