Tag Archives: Rick DeVos

ArtPrize7 – what a wild ride it has been!


Have you ever been in a room where everyone else is just as excited or more to be right where you are? That’s what the ArtPrize awards party felt like!

Before the awards started the crowd was treated to the energy driven sound of Vox Vidorra (according to their website, the band’s name is a multilingual neologism and alliteration meaning ‘the voice of the life you’re meant to live’). Vox Vidorra played a funky blend of soul music that made us jump out of our seats and bust a move (the wine in my hand didn’t hurt either). The Civic Theatre was such a gorgeous setting for the award ceremony, the atmosphere was electric as the crowd buzzed while waiting for the ceremony to begin.

Rick DeVos made a grand entrance and stunned the crowd with a mind blowing fact — kids that were 6th graders for the first Artprize were now seniors in high school.  Rick let audience think about that for a minute as he  reflected on how each and every participant, artist, volunteer, and community member played a part in impacting those kids’ outlook on the community and art in general.  He expressed how he has enjoyed how ArtPrize makes conversations happen – the buzz that happens around the “must see” pieces, what people like and don’t like.  He mentioned that finding a way to include all members of the community in artistic discourse is what Artprize is all about, and that they truly succeeded this year.

Continue reading ArtPrize7 – what a wild ride it has been!

Go Forth and ArtPrize!


Despite chilly temps and overcast sky, hundreds of visitors filled Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids Sunday as ArtPrize Founder, Rick DeVos and Executive Director, Christian Gaines revealed the public’s top picks.

Top20-1Consumers Energy kicked the event off with the announcement of the winner of the  Consumers Energy SmartArt student ArtPrize Competion. The competition, in its third year, is a collaboration between Consumers Energy and Grand Rapids Public Schools. SmartArt stands for “Students Making Art with a Renewable Theme.” Students were asked to use renewable energy and energy efficiency as themes in their entries. Zoe Bultman received Best in Show from three judges. She received an Apple laptop computer and a $1,000 college scholarship from Consumers Energy.Top20-4Top20-6The first round of ArtPrize public voting came to an end at 11:59 PM, October 3rd. 30,994 visitors had cast 377,302 votes for art, elevating five artist entries from each category — 2-D, 3-D, Installation and Time-Based. These 20 ArtPrize Seven entries will now move on to the second round of voting, with the chance of winning over $200,000 in cash awards.

Gains and Rick DeVos took the stage to introduce the twenty artist entries selected from among 1,550 eligible works.Top20-7Many of the artists and their supporters were present, and as the advancing artists were announced, spots of the crowd would burst into cheers and excited shouts of congratulations! The excitement was palpable, so much so that it was hard not to cheer even if you didn’t personally know any of the artists. Continue reading Go Forth and ArtPrize!

ArtPrize 2012: The Sponsor Party


ArtPrize opening day is right around the corner, and there is already a noticeable buzz throughout the city. Banners are up, art is being installed, and official ArtPrize events are on the calendar.

Last evening, the ArtPrize team hosted a celebration for the sponsors who help make the 19-day event possible. There are 178 sponsors and six media partners who make up the list this year, and the Sponsor Party gave each a tour of the 2012 space. Guests were treated to delicious hors d’oeuvres, wine tasting, live music, and the first peek at The HUB, located at 41 Sheldon.

The HUB is essentially the “nerve center” for ArtPrize. It’s the headquarters for the ArtPrize team and volunteers, and it is the only place where you can find the full collection of ArtPrize merchandise. You can register to vote, pick up an event guide, and get your wristbands for the ArtBus. On Friday night all who were passing through gave it great reviews. There was also an opportunity for the sponsors to get registered for ArtPrize voting, and beat the crowds that will be coming out in the next week to get signed up.

The ArtPrize store in the HUB is bigger and better than ever. From buttons to posters, from onesies to jackets and everything in between…you can find it there. While guests shopped tonight they were treated to live music by Hannah Niah & The Boys.

Another new area in the HUB is the park just outside the entrance. The road in front of the building has been closed off and with the help of Landscape Design Services and Herman Miller, there is an adorable landscaped area with quite a bit of seating. It will be a great place for ArtPrize guests to meet up throughout the next few weeks.

Stellafly would like to thank the ArtPrize team, especially Event Producer Noddea Skidmore, for the invitation to be involved again this year. We are proud to be part of the Official ArtPrize Media Coverage Team. This privilege allows us to bring you all of the behind the scenes coverage of this year’s event! Stay tuned!

Be sure to visit ArtPrize online: http://www.artprize.org/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ArtPrize

The Wheelhouse Talks: Rick DeVos


When you hear the name Rick DeVos, it probably conjures up thoughts of ArtPrizeBoxed Water, and 5×5 Night. The grandson of Rich DeVos spoke to a group of young leaders and community members at the last of this year’s Wheelhouse Talks, an event hosted by Grand Valley State University’s Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies.

Describing himself as an “introverted, recently turned 30-year old, interested in starting slightly odd projects, much happier in a quiet room with a book than with a microphone and a spotlight on stage,” DeVos spoke about the subset of leadership he feels is crucial to the future of our city, state, nation, and world—entrepreneurship.

There are three things he shared with the group about what it takes to be a great leader in an entrepreneurial world:

You need a good idea and a goal, more than a good plan.

Plans are critical when one is trying to get things done, but we have to be careful not to try and plan things that are “unplannable.” It is impossible to make a plan that takes every variable into account. ArtPrize started out as a film festival. 5×5 night started out as an open mic night.

You need to be brave.

Bravery encompasses a variety of words—fortitude, tenacity, nerve, and daring. DeVos said to remember that part of bravery is, “making peace that failure is more likely than it is not.” He told the audience that it is important when you pursue something new to realize that it should be designed to be adaptable when things do not go as planned. We must not be afraid to gamble.

You need to know no matter what, there will be trolls.

When we come up with new ideas, the critics are going to be out there waiting. DeVos reminded the group that, criticism is simply a byproduct of people actually paying attention. However, he suggested that in an entrepreneurial environment where individuals are all trying to move ideas forward, one should think long and hard about the critiquing our colleagues and, “decide whether it is actually productive.”

As he took questions from the audience, he hinted at a big announcement of his next venture, which we will have to wait until the end of April to learn about. So until then, grab a box of water and check out what ArtPrize IV will bring to Grand Rapids in September by going to artprize.org, and make plans to attend the next edition of 5×5 Night on April 24 at 5:30 p.m. at the Grand Rapids Art Museum.

For more information on The Wheelhouse Talks, LIKE their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/wheelhousetalks 

Website: http://www.gvsu.edu/hauenstein/leadership-speaker-series-1056.htm