dropping off art

Picture this....I've just filled the front seat/back seat and hatchback with art. The front seat has two boxes of RR Plates in it and the rest of the car is filled too as I am on my way to Waitsfield, about 45 minutes away for an art drop off for a weekend solo show. I've lived here three winters now and I always stop and get the mail on the way out when driving somewhere. Today I did and as I left my car slid. Then it got stuck. I had to climb over all my boxes and walk back down the long driveway and get a shovel. I tried to shovel all the snow out from under my car and had to climb back over my art in the front seat passengers side and try to get out, only to completely slide into the mailbox.

I called Tod three times, I knew he was at work and in a very important meeting with the taxi people but I don't know the neighbors down the road so who else was I gonna call? He finally answered and thank god he and the boss came up and dug/pushed me out.

I mentioned a month ago that I was going to do a solo show in this design shop that I have had my clocks in since summer. The owner wants to start exhibiting art and she chose me as her first show! I think a part of me wasn't feeling super excited, lately I've been pretty bummed about having all this new art and nowhere to show it, I've not made any progress in venturing out of the Vermont scene. At this new shop I was going to be showing a fair amount of older works, the RR Plates, RR Clocks and a few mixed media pieces. It's a lovely place but it is also filled with furniture and odds and ends for the home so it isn't a full blown gallery (yet!). Today perked me up in an unexpected way because not only did Leanne have an excitement that I didn't realize I was craving to see, she is letting me come back tomorrow to drop off more new work! She also went on and on about my James Dean piece saying if this was in New York it would sell like that. She talked about the nuances of it; this coming from someone who once had a thriving business of her own going in NY and is an artist herself meant something to me. I guess I really don't have enough exposure yet nor get enough feedback from people to understand my own art if that makes sense. She seemed to get it too that this isn't the kind of art that joe blow is going to get, I've been craving this and needed to hear someone believe in my work. I gotta tell ya, lately I've been thinking pretty negative thoughts about art. I cannot for the life of me understand or figure out how to branch out. It is my roadblock. I guess it was to easy in retrospect to get into the gallery here in Stowe. I walked in and showed them art....they didn't like it but didn't close the door on me. A few months later I had my first art show with 50 or so artists in a big indoor space, invited them to come and they liked what they saw. A few months later I brought work in and I was in. No formalities, no playing a game with convoluted aires. I'm starting to think I'm not going to get connected to a gallery outside of the state and that makes me feel doomed.

So, I have this show Sat. to look forward to. We (the owner and I) aren't too sure who is going to show up since this is her first time having an opening and I have no contacts to invite. She did a great job with free advertising so we will just have to cross out fingers that it wont be a bust!


San said...

Paula, getting stuck in the snow--a bummer. I can see you regarding it as a metaphor for your general feeling of late of being stuck, careerwise.

I've been lingering over your post, pausing to go and make myself a big cup of Mayan dark roast. Since you've posted pictures of your living space, I feel like I'm there in your house. Wish we were sitting face-to-face over coffee or tea and I could offer that kind of encouragement that Leanne provided. I always enjoy seeing the new work you're doing.

But it does sound like things are opening up a bit. The design shop choosing you as first art show--congratulations! Don't knock any venue that can make you money. So what if they show furniture and other things. IF they sell your art, it's a good venue as a stepping stone to bigger ones.

Best of luck...

Nellie's Needles said...

...and who knows where this may lead?

self taught artist said...

san i appreciate that warm comment, i'm touched you'd want to have coffee with me here and encourage me. thank you.

as far as metaphor...get this, the night before I decided to clear out the big garage and put my car in it, the next day I wanted to open the door and the belt to the electric opening broke. I had to inch my way into a circle and get out on the other door! And in the biggest rag around the state they MISPELLED MY NAME AND CALLED ME PAUL.

the mail box thing almost broke me.
as tim gunn says...'carry on'.

San said...

Consider yourself initiated, Paula, into the dark side of publicity. I've been called SAM in our local paper. And when we had a major show this past August, we got a great (free) spread with four images, BUT one of the honorees' names was repeatedly misspelled.

It's annoying, but it happens. And publicity is publicity. Here's hoping Paul sells tons. Just be sure they spell your name correctly on the checks.