Artrain's New Wheels
to figure out their next career steps.
Conlin and a longtime friend, former New York Times reporter Dan Shaw, submitted a long-shot grant application to the Knight/NEA Community Arts Journalism Challenge. Their proposal, which they called CriticCar Detroit, was to create a mobile recording studio that would invite people to "record video reviews as they exit performances and exhibitions." To their shock, out of 233 applications, theirs was one of just three funded.
But then, Conlin says, Shaw decided he did not want to move to Detroit- leaving her "really on my own" to turn the $100,000 grant into a real-life project. "I was like a deer in the headlights," she recalls. "As a journalist, I didn't know any of the ins and outs of how difficult a nonprofit is" to run.
Then, at the Whitmans' party two years ago, Rivkin met Deb Polich-and realized that Artrain might be able to help. He told Conlin, "You need to come talk to Deb."