Saturday, September 10, 2011

New Gallery Season

So far, the new gallery season has gotten off to a disappointing start.  First of all, the turnout at the Second Friday Open Studios was not that great.  I am thankful for the few people who came by and looked at my work, but I wish I had sold something.  Perhaps it's the economy.  Maybe people are afraid to buy art because they don't know what's going to happen to their other investments.  It's just really frustrating to me because a lack of customers (and design clients and tutoring students) makes my investment in my studio seem like a big waste of money.  Sorry to be so negative, but I am just feeling discouraged and annoyed right now.  I mean, I make these paintings to sell to other people, not to just hang on the walls of my studio and the countless juried shows I have to pay so much money to enter.  Yes, it's expensive being an artist.  At least most of my materials are free.

Since things were so dead around here at the Fine Arts Building, I'm glad I left at 7 to go to the big night of openings in the River North and West Loop Gallery Districts.  As soon as I got off the Brown Line at the Chicago stop, I saw the crowds and thought, so this is where all the art patrons went tonight.  But actually the turnout was less than it has been the previous two years.  It was raining last night, so maybe that explains it.  Maybe it was because I only had 2 hours to see anything, but to be honest there was only one show I saw that truly impressed me.  And that show was the exhibition of Angel Otero's paintings at the Kavi Gupta gallery.


Wanderer Above a Sea of Fog

2011
collaged oil paint skins on canvas
86" x 73" x 2.5"

Seeing these paintings made me feel so inspired.  Inspired enough, I think, to keep painting and not give up on art just yet.  I felt so moved in the presence of this beautiful art.  Seeing it in person beneath the glow of the fiercely beaming gallery lights (Seriously, what's the color temperature in there?) was quite possibly one of the best experiences I've had all week.  It reminded me of what matters to me, of why I make art in the first place, of why I love it so much. 

And just because I love it, that doesn't mean it's supposed to be easy.  So I'll keep painting and keep searching for more and more sources of inspiration.  I will try my best not to let discouragement keep me away from the studio.

And I hope that somewhere in this world there are some buyers and patrons who will dare to defy the trends and the naysayers on the news, who will open up their wallets and purchase art again.  And I hope that some of those patrons will purchase their artwork from me.

Yes, I have to try to find something to be positive about, somehow...

2 comments:

  1. Hi Tiffany

    I am a painter who love a lot of the work you do and wanted to say: please don't give up. Get discouraged, angry and upset. But please do not give up. You are very talented.

    Also, have you talked to an accountant/tax preparer about writing off your studio rent/materials? You should also look into having your work published in Studio Visit Magazine or New American Paintings. More value and exposure than regular juried competitions, in my opinion.

    Just wanted to give you some words of encouragement from one painter to another. :)

    Take care and good luck
    Antonio

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Antonio! I really appreciate the encouragement. I have saved all my receipts for art supplies & studio rent this year & definitely plan to write them all off. Thanks for the suggestion about New American Paintings and Studio Visit. I will look into what I need to do in order to get into both of them.

    ReplyDelete

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