Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
My name is Patricia Pisters, I am 27 years old and I live in Sittard, together with my sweetheart Stan and two little ferrets Gizmo and Truus. I studied Arts and Culture at Maastricht University and Arts and Education at Fontys Hogeschool in Tilburg. After graduation, I started working as a freelancer. Under the header of buro-P, I initiate and support projects in the cultural field, focused on education, communication and presentation.
I have a huge passion for art in the broadest sense of the word, history and nature. In my work, these three passions constantly congregate: in writing texts, creating and attending educational activities and assisting artists. Even in spare time, art, history and nature are the common threads in my life. I love to visit museums and reading a book, but I’m also often outside, in nature. Sometimes for relaxation, sometimes for exercise, but always looking for beautiful things to create crazy objects or to investigate at home.
What do you consider your distinctive achievement?
Hmm, that’s a tricky one… I am still very happy that I did two Master studies at once. I wanted to learn something more practical next to Arts and Culture, which was quite theoretical. It was hard to combine it with Arts and Education and two internships, but I would never do it differently. From there on, I kept developing skills to transform myself into an allrounder. Now, I know my way on the web for example, or how to write a proper subsidy application. These are frequently asked questions in the cultural field.
What I’m also proud of, is my collaboration with great organizations, such as SCHUNCK*, Marres, the Bonnefantenmuseum and De Domijnen. And of course with artists, such as Koen Vanmechelen and Stefan Cools. I learned so much from them. I am very grateful for the changes that they all offered me, for the knowledge and advises that they shared. They didn’t only give me insights in my work, but also in myself.
What are you looking forward too?
I am very much looking forward to a project that I am currently working on. It will actually be my first personal project and therefore it is quite exiting. I won’t give any details yet, because I’m still working on the plan of action, but I’m sure that it is going to be great! When I’m ready to share it, I will post it on my website buro-P.nl
Another thing that I am looking forward to, is the unexpected opportunities and collaborations that will come into my way. Frankly, that’s what I love most about being a freelancer: you never know what you run up to, who you are going to meet and what you are going to learn. I consider it a sort of ongoing journey, which is always full of surprises.
Which advice would you give to other professionals?
Be patient and don’t give up! It is absolutely true: you need a very long breath to become successful in the cultural field, but it is definitely worth it. Just keep believing in yourself, in your own capacities and strengths and keep doing what you love to do most. It might not give you loads of money, but it gives you something much more important: knowledge, connections, fulfillment and happiness.
What are the challenges that we need to overcome to make cultural entrepreneurship more accessible?
I think it’s important that organizations do not only focus on formalities, but also on personalities. In my opinion, there is too much emphasis on degrees, experiences and even location. But why do they not select their future employees on passion? Someone might not be living in the requested area for example, but what does it matter if this person is full of energy, enthusiasm and passion about the job, project, activity or whatever, and is willing to travel an hour or so? I think it’s almost the biggest compliment an organization can get, if a person really, really, really wants to be part of it.