About the Studio Protector

As artists, we are accustomed to thinking about earth, water, wind and fire as essential elements in making art. However, those same elements can suddenly wreak havoc, turning the studio from a place of creativity into a disaster zone.

All too often, the impact can be devastating to an artist’s career. BUT, small measures taken in advance of an emergency and the right sequence of emergency response actions can make a huge difference in reducing loss and in the time it takes to rebound from a setback. The Studio Protector is an information toolkit to help artists be disaster ready and disaster resilient.   It is a self-help resource, geared for artists at all career levels--from students to emerging and established professionals.  Working artists have been involved in every step of the design and testing of this toolkit.  While there are many other resources for emergency preparedness, the Studio Protector focuses on information that is relevant to artists and the realities of the studio environment.  

Rather than trying to be encyclopedic, we hope to present the most important information as concisely as possible, and always in the context of safeguarding the careers of artists.

The Studio Protector has two components:

The Wall Guide--an easy to use, calendar-sized reference tool with checklists of the most essential information for emergency preparation and response. The design is engaging, decidedly low-tech, and functional before, during, and after an emergency.

The Online Guide --a companion multi-media digest with supplementary information to help artists tailor their readiness efforts to their particular circumstances, to assist them craft an effective response to an emergency if it occurs, and to speed recovery.


Before an emergency: 

  • Use the wall guide 

  • as a prompt to help you learn about and put into practice essential safeguards for your A”s—Art, Assets, and Archives.”  Being prepared is not an ‘all or nothing’ proposition! Start with small, simple actions—including completing the “Getting Help” booklet of emergency contacts--and then keep adding other protective measures. 

  • as a disaster training tool for you and your studio assistants or co-workers so that you can act decisively when hours and minutes count.

  • Use the online guide

  • as a more in-depth guide to disaster prevention and planning.  Concisely-written pages on a wide variety of topics with annotated listings of web and print resources will help steer you to more comprehensive and technical information.  Interviews with artists and experts  add straightforward real-world experience to the mix of topics and issues. 

During and after an emergency:

  • Use the wall guide

  • as a handy, practical and portable set of instructions and tips for decisive disaster response.  The “Pocket Protectors” and Getting Help booklet can be removed and pocketed for ready reference, both in the studio and off-site, when you need reliable and easy to follow information fast.

  • Use the online guide

  • for more in-depth information to help you recover and salvage artwork, livelihood, and workspace.  The mix of solid information and selective links and resources will streamline your research process;  the well-honed advice from experts and compelling artists’ stories will keep you  on track.



The Studio Protector is the first product of the Coalition for Artists’ Preparedness and Emergency Response, a new national task force that was formed in 2006. Dedicated to ensuring a national safety net for artists, and the organizations that serve them, before, during and after disasters the Coalition is a consortium of local, state, regional and national arts agencies, artist service organizations and foundations,   CERF+ is the lead sponsor of the Coalition, and also, the creator of the Studio Protector.