The Founders of The Social-Professional Network of the Art Department
Cubestory #2: When Liz Met Eva
We all know Eva Radke as the Art Department Activist Warrior, but before ArtCube Nation was even a dream, Eva was an art dept. coordinator, like many of you. In 2005, when art departments were predominately crewed with men, Eva opened the door for women to work their way up in film. Eva made a Craiglist listing looking for an office PA; enter in the badass Liz Minot: 6 foot with amazingly bright red hair.
Liz was in her early 20s and she was working as an AP in the Television Media Department at the Bronx Zoo, but she quit to “get on set and get my hands dirty.” She saw Eva’s listing and answered it right away.
In a small world connection, Liz went to Hampshire College with one of the women who was already working with Eva, so Eva knew how resilient Liz was. Hampshire College has an individualized style program, similar to a master’s thesis style, with a board of directors and a project that you take on for a full year. Liz really took to this, “I really loved it there, it makes for very inquisitive, independent people” and was a great learning curve for those just starting at 18 years old. Three days before Liz’s gallery show and a month before she graduated, her dorm along with all of her art burned down. It was a big deal on campus and it was real notoriety amongst Hampshire students, “I was the girl who lost her Div 3 [thesis] in the fire.” So when Liz came in for the interview, it was, to her surprise, one of the first things Eva asked about.
When Liz first walked in, she said, “Eva gave me an up and down and then said I was hired.”
“That was my first real job, I hadn’t even driven a truck.” Yet she leaped in and ended up loving every bit of it - especially driving the truck! She was freelancing in the art department from then on and “it was the scariest thing.” Everyone hiring was looking for someone who could lift furniture and there weren’t many people taking a chance on women PAs because they didn’t think they could. Eva vouching for her went a long way. Eva connected her with a lot of her coordinator friends, “I had a stack of women supporting me.”
This left her to have a thriving freelance experience with “ambitious truck driving,” where she drove and organized the trucks to a T, and we all know how crucial it is to have a properly organized truck to save us from a huge headache.
“I was going from job to job to job as a PA for 5 to 6 years; once you get good at it, you feel good about the position you fill. It’s challenging to step up to the next rung and redefine yourself in your career”, but she knew - “I had to push a little bit harder and to get paid a little bit more, and I started prop styling.”
Over the years Eva and Liz kept in touch. Liz moved to San Francisco for a time and gave Eva a call when she was moving back to New York - thus started their next chapter with Film Biz and the magical network we all know - ArtCube Nation.
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