The Gap doesn’t want kids to be artists

Dear Fellow Artists (or should I say “Tire Makers”),


As usual, we’ve been given bad press. A big corporation with a loud and artistically excellent voice is saying, in a fun and nonchalant way, that we are not valuable.


Gap Inc., designed the following shirts that I find to be horrifyingly cute, FOR CHILDREN. (See photo)

The Gap doesn't want kids to be artists


Sadly, I’m not surprised. I know that most people are blind to the value of art in their daily life. They don’t understand it, and it’s not their fault… It’s ours.


I believe that the world without art is like a car with a flat tire. It still has the ability to function, but it will eventually be destroyed without air (art) to keep it lifted above sticks and stones. If a car goes for too long without a good tire, it could blow up from all the friction.


Artists, excellent ones, are tire makers – we have the ability to keep people from self imploding.

These shirts tell us, in part, what’s wrong with us…not the Gap.


As tire makers, I find often that we are making tires that only tire makers can use and appreciate. We get angry on the road when non-tire makers are unimpressed by our sweet wheels.


We need to be accountable as artists to create with excellence, not just for ourselves, but for others. We need to engaged our audiences in such a winsome way that people from all walks of life will sit down and take notice.


Let’s share our excellence with people and teach them how to use our art in a way that they personally find inspiration and joy…Unleashing the artist that is within them…. Inspiring them to make tires as well.


We’ve been gifted by the Ultimate Artist, to bring valuable creativity and ingenuity into the world and culture. People need us, and I care about people.


To live life without art, is no life at all.


If we can learn to communicate this truth…Not through anger, but through the excellence of our creative lives, we will fix the problem that caused Gap to make those ridiculous shirts in the first place.


Melissa DeGroat
Artistic Director/Founder