Today I start the art in victoria blog. I have recently (yesterday) made a commitment to attend and to discuss (on this blog) at least two victoria art openings every month. I came to the conclusion that this is necessary for several reasons. 1. By attending art events in the city, which I rarely do, I will hopefully meet other artists and curators. I will hopefully become someone who other people know. 2. By writing about my art experiences I hope to develop a new and possibly valuable skill set. Art writing. And 3. By turning my personal trials and tribulations into another form of art, writing, I’m gonna have some fun and kick some ass!
So, during the past week or so I have had two rather interesting art experiences.
The first was the Victoria Look Show. This is run by the Community Arts Council of Greater Victoria and is taking place in the Bay Centre, 3rd floor. Now the idea behind this show is to exhibit, salon-style, a vast array of art, mostly painting, but also scultpure, photography, collage and prints. It’s for members only. The entrance fee and membership costs 35 dollars and anyone can become a member. There are prizes and ribbons and really it’s a great event.
Unfortunately for me, however, I am either a complete unknown and therefore a complete unknowable or else my work is considered, by the council and it’s volunteers, to be on a par with complete crap! Now I know these are harsh words, but my experiences these past few years have led me to this harsh conclusion.
In the last three years I have participated in three events hosted by the CACGV. The first event was an earlier Look show. In that instance my painting (which regardless of positioning was one of the first to sell!!) was hung directly below the ceiling, where it’s very dark and very far away from art loving eyes.
The next event was called Myself, Women in the World, which was curated by UVic women’s studies prof Astri Wright. The painting I contributed to that show was hung, and this is true, underneath of a shelving unit. You know those shelves made up of a board on top of two metal brackets? Well, there she was, my woman in the world, about 3 1/2 feet off the ground and in the deep gloom of a shelf.
The latest episode, this year’s Look show, which runs until Feb, 28th, is just as bad. I suppose I should have expected it. I went to take a LOOK yesterday. I missed the opening, for reasons I will discuss tomorrow, and to be perfectly frank I am glad I did. Anyway, at this year’s show they have used those portable walls for extra hanging space and probably to make the room look more scultpturally appealing. Unfortunately, in one case, they have placed a portable wall in a very tight angle against a real wall. The paintings on the real wall are ok because you can see them from a distance. The paintings on the portable wall, however, are in a deep shadow and are not really visible to anyone unless that person takes the initiative to wedge him or her self into that space between the real and the portable walls. Quess where my painting is hanging.
I cannot allow myself to conclude that I am being punished for bad art. I am too stubborn for that, so I have to believe that the council and it’s volunteers don’t know me and therefore do not consider my work a valuable contribution. In spite of the fact that over the past 3 years I have created a public art installation, have had two solo painting shows and have participated in various group things, they DON’T know me.
Ergo, reason numbero UNO for starting this blog and committing to greater visibility.
Tomorrow I am going to write about my second and infinitely more interesting art experience; my two person show at the Slide Room Gallery. Representations of Desire runs until the 23rd and can be seen at 2549 Quadra Street.
Thanks for reading!