Pantheon Community

Ask me how to deep clean a dishwasher (or how to start an art collection!)

:wave: Howdy! I’m Amanda Klimek, Pantheon’s Office Manager. I make sure the offices are running smoothly so that Pantheors have a great place to work. Remember when we had offices? That was cool. I also plan the company culture events, with work-appropriate funtivities, a dash of whimsy and a good helping of old-fashioned Pantheon quirkiness. :unicorn:

:art: Pantheon is my first job in tech as I hail from the wonderful yet chronically underfunded world of the arts. I worked as an art installer, a “gallerina,” and a curator for a sculpture garden before I found my true passion in teaching children’s fine art. But lurking in the background was the big, bad student loans, so I joined Task Rabbit to help make up the difference.

:sun_with_face: One day, I walked into Pantheon HQ to make coffee and wash dishes and the rest is history. I fell in love with the people (and the glory of being able to pay my bills), so I found more ways to be useful and was hired full time.

:party_dancer_shark: No matter where I end up, I look for ways to encourage people to be creative, to share their creativity with others, and connect with and through the arts. I’m a crusader against the popular myths that art is only for certain educated or cultured people, or that making means something better than “a stick figure.” My mantra is that creativity is a process, not a product. Someday, I’d like to teach ceramics classes out of my own studio. But until then, I am thrilled to be part of the unique community at Pantheon, to learn from the incredibly talented people here, and (I can’t stress this enough), pay my bills.

Besides the whole art making thing, I have two ridiculous senior chihuahuas :dog:, a brazillian plants :seedling: and an awesome partner who is a game artist :nerd_face:. I also love to sing in the shower, dance in the living room, garden in the driveway, binge audiobooks, mainline coffee and eat delicious food that I did not have to cook myself. :yum:

Why not ask me anything!?

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Oooh! I definitely want to chat about starting an art collection! My spouse almost went to college for fine art (I’m glad those plans fell through because we would have never met!) and both of us feel strongly about supporting artists but are still not sure how to move forward, beyond buying pieces from a few close friends over the years.

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Hi Katie! That’s awesome that you want to start an art collection! Oh boy, I have a lot of advice!

A great place to start is to attend Open Studios. Every big city and many smaller cities will have an open studios time 1x per year. Usually lead by the local arts council (google “your city” + arts and see what you get!). They usually provide maps and on the day, you can visit local artist’s studios, where they will have put out their work on display and priced to sell. Buying directly out of an artist’s studio is a LOT cheaper because they do not have to pay a gallery commission (galleries usually take 40-60%) , and they don’t have to include the price of framing. Art fairs are another great place, there are many independent art fairs, your arts council will have info on that as well. Many arts institutions ( like museums and community art spaces) will have fund raising auctions 1x per year. For the price of admission, you will get access to work that is accomplished and from big names in your community for much cheaper than if you bought it at their gallery. Plus, it supports the art institution’s programming! Lastly, gallery openings are usually grouped together 1x per month (here is is first Thursdays, but it is different days different places). You can go see a bunch of work at once, and help an artist celebrate the achievement of their gallery show. Sign the guest book!

Here is my advice in list form!

  1. Find out about events through your local arts council

  2. Attend Open studios , Art fairs, community art auctions and gallery openings

  3. Buy prints or small works if you cannot afford big works at the time- it is an investment in the artist and helps them keep making amazing things

  4. Remember- art can seem expensive but it lasts lifetime (and beyond!). I like to go into an open studios or an art fair with a budget - (example “I will spend $200 today”) . That way, I don’t feel like I am over spending, or feel overwhelmed and want to buy everything. By setting that expectation, I can look for my favorite thing and not feel sticker shock when I purchase it.

  5. Don’t buy fake art from Bed Bath and Beyond (or amazon or whatever) - You will spend more money for less quality, and your local artists will not be supported. You can get better work for cheaper if you know where to look!

  6. Spend your art budget on the work and not the frames. Put your money where it counts! Ikea has very nice frames.

7.The most important thing of all: Collect work you like!!! Don’t worry about its “someday” value, or what other people are telling you it is “worth.” Worth is in the eye of the beholder, and there is a lid for every pot. Get art that will bring you joy for years to come, and don’t worry about the rest.

I hope that helps! So excited for you!

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Wow - just when I thought you couldn’t get any cooler! What was being a curator for a sculpture garden like? That sounds like a dream. Also what are your chihuahuas’s names??

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Hi Liz! :sun_with_face:
The sculpture garden was a ton of fun and looked beautiful but it was also a bit of a headache. I loved visiting studios, finding the work, and placing it! It was on the grounds of a beautiful hotel made out of cottages spread out, and they wanted to attract art-lovers, but didn’t really know much about art or artists. They did not want to buy the work, just loan it, so I had to insist on them providing insurance and not taking any commission on sales - which was a lot of back and fourth. Unfortunately, people think art should be free. But artists have to pay their bills! I was so glad I insisted on insurance for the artwork, because a gardener damaged a piece with a weed whacker, and another piece was stolen. In the end, it was a great experience for me and I learned a lot, but I would not work with people who didn’t want to pay for what they got out of a sculpture garden.

My doggos are named Andy and Annie ( I didn’t name them) We usually call Annie “mama” because she is an old mama who had def a ton of babies before she was dumped at the shelter. Andy is her son. They love each other so much , it is very cute. This is an old pic but one of my favs They are both grayer now lol.

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Hey @AmandaK :wave:

Thanks so much for sharing more about your experience! I will say Pantheon is definitely lucky to have you!! You truly do bring the “old-fashioned Pantheon quirkiness” :unicorn: out of us all & I love it!

No matter where I end up, I look for ways to encourage people to be creative, to share their creativity with others, and connect with and through the arts.

:point_up_2: That my dear is COMMUNITY! Also one of the reasons I love what I do day in & day out. I get to create a place where everyone is welcome to be who they are, and do what they love with people who share the same passions & values!

Side note–I LOVED your online store! So many cute things! You better believe I will be doing some shopping/supporting of my own here this weekend :slight_smile:

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Thanks for all the tips! I’m right with you on tip #5 to the point where many of our walls are empty! We have some beautiful historic maps (I LOVE MAPS) and some pieces done by a college roommate but there’s lots of room for more :slight_smile:

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