6/8/08

clarity

So a few posts ago I've written about needing support in some undefined way and trying to come to terms with what if any direction I am trying to head into. I appreciate the feedback and thoughts, and mostly for being able to question and for lack of better word, complain a bit and not have people react as much as just listen and accept me. I really don't want to whine, and I don't feel I have [too much at least eh?]. It is my life after all and no one is going to, nor should they, direct it but me.

The good thing about this is, I feel I have more clarity. How can I complain about the out of state gallery representation thing when I haven't given it my all? And what I see now is I haven't given it my all because there is still a part of me that isn't attracted to it because of the experiences I have had at galleries thus far. And until, unless I can find a way to let it go and enjoy the experience I will never follow that route in earnest. For some reason the word jejune comes to mind. I need to have a thirst for rejection, want it and expect it, because the more I am rejected the closer I will get to acceptance somewhere, sometime. It is always always the failures that teach us. And pushing and forcing and hoping for a short cut ultimately leaves one empty.

I don't want someone to save me. I don't want someone to do it for me. I think my feelings of wanting support and help have more to do with people referring people to me or referring me to them. That fine web of networking and socializing that I always have problems with needs to be dealt with. I'm not the kind of person that will join groups and stick with it, I'm just not. That doesn't mean I can't find support some other way does it? Maybe the support will come in ways I can't imagine at a time I can't know.

So I feel it might be time to step things up just a little. I really need to take better pictures of my work even if I live in a hole with bad lighting. I need to go outside of my comfort zone and find something to try. There are instinctual things I dislike and know enough about myself by now not to force, but that doesn't mean I can't try a few more things. Even something little like what I did the last few days. I went out and ran my errands and this time handed the people I do business with my clock postcards. I sat down and spent a good amount of time submitting to White Columns last week and yesterday to Artists Space. I've seen that The Drawing Center is also a place to submit (I'm having a hard time finding where though on their site), and that they give critiques? More investigating.

I've sat up late into the night making a list of projects I have going and seeing it isn't such a mess after all. I've written an email to the gallery I'm in in Stowe, staying in touch and letting them know I have some bigger works coming this summer. I went to an opening at the other gallery I have work in, did my best to mingle and did my best to study other works and allow myself to really enjoy seeing lots of art. I'll get in my little car and risk driving on old snow tires and an old timing belt and take more pictures this week even if I have to go alone to creepy areas because Tod is working. I will just keep doing what is in front of me. Summer is here, soon this house will be full of people and I will have to be more quiet, more out of sight. I gotta get that art momentum going, I find it hard to believe that I have come this far with so little all to just dead end. I've given it everything, all my time and money and I don't think I could live with myself if I didn't see it through. Even if where I think I want to go looks like an impossible journey, the getting from here to there, I have to try. Even if I'm still unsure where it is I want to go, I have to try. The buffet of life...sample it and if you don't like it move on and keep trying the things that are unknown.

I read something recently about complaining and I want to share it more so I can see it and be reminded of it:

People complain most about what they don't want to do or feel they can't do for themselves. so complaining also shows that you are not in charge and reveals your lack of patience and inability to act for yourself.

Complaining creates the wrong atmosphere for making a change.

If you complain when someone asks you to do something it spoils the effect of doing what you've been asked.

When you complain, you are really protesting against your own powerlessness and helplessness.

The weaknesses you can't face in yourself are what you complain about most in others.

excerpt from 'finding your strength in difficult times' by david viscott. yes its a 'self help' kind of meditation book that someone loaned me. Yes I'm tired of those books, but sometimes they are the perfect little pill to take.

6 comments:

Kim Hambric said...

Well, I have been doing some complaining lately. I am irritated that the gallery I sent a portfolio to has not responded in any way. I know I should follow up and call them. But wouldn't that be double rejection? GRRRR. Do I really want to be in a gallery in a small non-art town? Perhaps I just want acceptance.

Glad to hear that you are handing out those fabulous postcards & keeping tabs on the gallery.

self taught artist said...

i still think there is a fine line between complaining and venting. vent away kim....and then call those idiots and bug them!

The Minimalist said...

I know how you feel. You are a wonderful artist and also a good writer. Perhaps you could write some copy about your philosphy of your found object art. I am a big time greenie and I love it! Also, I have been reading a site by a high school art teacher that has lots of inspiring thoughts.
http://artmusingbyalexander.blogspot.com/ She led me to an article on creativity that was amazing!
http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=how-to-unleash-your-creativity I encourage you to read it. I felt great after I did!

self taught artist said...

thanks minimalist, i'm checking those blogs out right now!
as far as philosphy of my art, my artist statement reflects that. I do like to write but I dont really have the mental ammunition to keep writing for long, I start to feel like I'm just talking out of my asshole.

Sheree Rensel said...

You wrote:
"How can I complain about the out of state gallery representation thing when I haven't given it my all? And what I see now is I haven't given it my all because there is still a part of me that isn't attracted to it because of the experiences I have had at galleries thus far. And until, unless I can find a way to let it go and enjoy the experience I will never follow that route in earnest."

Paula,
This quote really struck a chord in me. I can relate to this a lot. I think I am very guilty of sabotaging my own art path because when things don't work out, I back off in one way or another. I won't go into all the nitty gritty here. Maybe I will write a blog post about this topic. Thanks for putting a bug in my ear!
:-)
Sheree

San said...

I enjoy reading about your soul-searching, Paula. Keep searching, babe.

I like what you and DV say about complaining. It IS a reflection of a feeling of powerlessness, isn't it? That's quite a wake-up call. And for a maker of clocks. Imagine that. (Sorry. Couldn't resist.)