Caroline Woolard

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Caroline Woolard (born 1984 - ) [1] is an artist and organizer whose work explores intersections between art and the solidarity economy.[2] She primarily works collaboratively and collectively and was a founding member of Trade School, OurGoods, and BFAMFAPhD.[3][4][5] Woolard is currently a lecturer at the Rhode Island School of Design and is an artist in residence at the Queens Museum of Art.


Woolard graduated from Cooper Union, at the time a tuition-free art school in New York with a BFA in 2006.[6]

Career and work[edit]

Woolard's work touches on collaboration, barter, real estate, and other forms of monetary and non-monetary exchange.[7] She is very concerned with ways to create sustainable spaces for artists to create their work and have a place to live on what artists make.[8] Woolard sees artists as a growing group of low-income individuals who deal with precarity.[9] Woolard says that she became involved with social practice art not because she was against commercial or institutional art, but instead because she believes the art world is too isolated.[10] Woolard hopes to promote collaboration between artists.[4] She also feels that broadening art classes to those who would not traditionally be able to afford them will expand the world of art for the better.[10] The Trade School that Woolard helped found provides classes which are paid for using barter.[4]

In 2009, Woolard curated a "newspaper exhibition" which highlighted the many economic issues facing workers in the arts.[11]

What is a Work of Art in the Age of $120,000 Art Degrees? from Statements by Caroline Woolard (2014)

BFAMFAPhD (a mashed together acronym of BFA, MFA and PhD) was created to raise awareness about those who graduate with creative degrees and who wish to pursue careers in the arts.[12] In addition to these financial concerns, Woolard and the other collaborators highlight problems of ethnic, gender and racial diversity in the art world.[13]

Other works of art that Woolard has created are public seating, urban campsites and swings for subways.[14]

Woolard's Exchange Café was presented at the Museum of Modern Art as part of the Department of Education’s Artists Experiment initiative (2013).[15] Woolard's work has been supported by a fellowship at Eyebeam, residencies at the Queens Museum, MacDowell Colony, Watermill, and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council,[16] a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation's NYC Cultural Innovation Fund.


  • Arts and Social Justice Fellow, Judson Church, New York (2015)


  1. ^ "Caroline Woolard Flips the Real Estate Script | ART21 New York Close Up". ART21 New York Close Up. Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  2. ^ Adam, Ludwig (9 June 2014). "Can a Sharing Platform for Artists Point to a More Equitable Society?". Forbes. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  3. ^ Bergin, Brigid (7 March 2010). "Will Teach for Goods: An Experiment in Bartering". WNYC. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c Rueb, Emily S. (23 February 2010). "A Trade School Where Ideas Are Currency". New York Times. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  5. ^ Moore, Christopher (26 April 2010). "Trade Balance". New York Post. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  6. ^ "Woolard, Caroline". The New School. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  7. ^ Steinhauer, Jillian (10 November 2013). "Could local currency be the future of money?". Salon. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  8. ^ Iqbal, Myra (8 October 2014). "Artists Weary about New Developments, Pledged Artist Space in Luxury Rental in Ridgewood". NY City Lens. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  9. ^ "Artist/Organizer Woolard to Highlight 'Economies of Collaboration' During visit". Alfred University. 10 February 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  10. ^ a b Kennedy, Randy (20 March 2013). "Outside the Citadel, Social Practice Art Is Intended to Nurture". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  11. ^ "Brooklyn Pavilion 2 Showing a Newspaper on Art Labor and Economics". Mediamatic. 2009. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  12. ^ Usmani, Josh (4 November 2014). "Cleveland Institute of Art Hosts Conference and Exhibition on Socially Engaged Art and Design". Cleveland Scene. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  13. ^ Steinhauer, Jillian (30 June 2014). "Report Finds NYC's Art World 200% Whiter Than Its Population [UPDATED]". Hyperallergic. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  14. ^ "Caroline Woolard". Mediamatic. Retrieved 7 March 2015. 
  15. ^ "MoMA Studio: Exchange Café". MoMA. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  16. ^ "Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Awards 2017 Grants and Residencies". Retrieved 2017-07-08. 

External links[edit]