Dear Ps1-interested people,
As the subject states, we will NOT be renewing the lease in the Jefferson Building. As the discussions of our tenancy this spring and the new lease recently presented to us has made clear, it is time for us to move on.
None of the stipulations of the lease were insurmountable on their own. As a much-loved organization with healthy support, we are confident we could raise enough money to cover a year’s worth of rent and utilities. We are creative, flexible, and savvy enough to shift some of our organizations other activities to make up for the barrier of not being able to do live performances (we can and will continue to do these at ps·z!). But the sum of these changes and the philosophical mentality inherent there within don’t make sense to us. We figure: if we are going to initiate a large-scale fund-raising campaign ($10,000+), we want it to go towards a long-term solution, not leave us in the same boat this time next year. Ultimately, we want to put our energy towards a space where all our programming is possible and welcome.
We really appreciate all the work that has been done by people in the University business office and UI Foundation this spring in figuring this out for us. And as we’ve said in the past, we are immensely grateful to the UI Foundation for supporting our organization for the last 5 years. Their gift of space and resources has been an exemplary example of the University fostering a real commitment to the community that ultimately holds it. Management-wise, Dan Black and Steve Elder have taken care of countless legal and structural challenges over the past 5 years. This history of support has been bolstered our organization to the point that we will survive (if not thrive) with this newest change.
Though there may be those that read this loss negatively, this is not our nor the James Gang’s stance. To be clear: there will be a hiatus on art exhibitions while we re-imagine new installation spaces and possibilities. We have several ideas along these lines and invite others to get involved with us now as we plan this new exciting future.
As a timeline for vacancy: We are planning on ending all live performances at PS1 in early June. We have a theatre performance that first weekend, one music show scheduled for June 3rd, and a video screening scheduled for June 12th. We are booking no other performances in June to begin transitioning out. Our June exhibition will end June 22nd, and for all intents and purposes will be done with any programming in the basement of the Jefferson Building then.
Thanks again to all who have worked with us on this and helped our organization grow to what it is. ps·z and the Zenzic Press remain testaments to that work and are unfolding in amazing ways we couldn’t have foreseen. We look forward to consolidating our efforts and re-creating ourselves once again with more support and dedication to Iowa City’s art community.