Eye-level above Wayne Schmidt’s desk hangs an original canvas by Steve Stoller—once a starving artist. When homeless, Stoller and his wife Francy had taken up residence in a commercial property Wayne owned on Mass Ave. Needing to insure the building and wanting to foster some humane, temporary solution for his unexpected guests, Wayne commissioned the painting in lieu of rent.
The resulting composite highlights Stoller’s experience on Mass Ave. The lively golden palette is an infectious conveyance of Stoller’s robust appreciation of his city. It is so winsome, in fact, the artist found it difficult to part with.
Stoller is no longer a starving artist. He made his way to New York where his work commands handsome sums. But even when he was broke and homeless, he was not poor. He did not purchase comfort or security at the cost of what made him fully human.
We are increasingly driven—even enslaved—by the thinking mind, but there are “places” we need to go that the thinking mind won’t take us. The parts of mind where awareness, creativity, and appreciation reside deserve to live also. For this we need the arts. We need people within whose hearts and minds art’s value exceeds entertainment.
““If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.”