art, hooo, a what is it good for, absolutely nuthin

Dear Paula
Thank you for thinking of _____ Gallery. We did review your work online and don't feel that the work will fit with the direction of the gallery.
Best of luck in your future endeavors.
_______ ______

So much for word of mouth from someone who thought for sure my work would fit into this gallery in Boston, granted it appears to be mostly paintings and a few strange sculptures, I had hopes about the puzzle works at least. Not what I was hoping for since this woman who referred me is close friends with the gallery owner and an artist herself.

I can't make squat right now anyhow. Can barely handle driving a stupid cab 1/4 of a mi....I dont seem to be good for much right now.


San said...

That's a disappointment--getting the form letter when your referral had an "in." Don't take it as a criticism of your work. The letter probably means the gallery doesn't want to spread themselves too thin in representing artists.

Please cut yourself some slack. A lot of people would find it hard to drive a cab. I certainly would, with my bad eyesight and sense of direction. I'd probably be fired the first day.

Sending you my best hopes and wishes...

self taught artist said...

san you get it dont you...it was more a slap in the face by dint of the letter being so rude sounding when this was supposed to be a good friend of the person that referred me. she went on to me about how good my work was and gave me an 'in', all to be treated like a faceless nothing.
i guess i am nothing though so why should I be given a reason.

BlueJude said...

HOPE is a beautiful thing. Don't let go of it - even if you are feelin good for nuthin honey! Holiday hugs and best wishes for good things comin your way in 2008!

San said...

Paula, everyone trying to get their work out there receives these form letters. Your friend tried to make a connection for you and it didn't work out. I hope you're not holding it against your friend, who has no control over the gallery's decisions.

When I was serious about publishing my poetry, I received a drawerful of such letters. They're discouraging, yes, but part of the game. From time to time, I'd get a personalized rejection letter, asking to see more work. Then, once in a while, I'd get something published. Still more infrequently, I'd get a check. With visual art, you at least have a chance of receiving larger checks. But there is a lot of rejection. Please don't take such so personally. It'll kill the determined warrior within.

self taught artist said...

the referral person wasn't my friend and i dont have anything up with this person. i appreciate what she tried to do.
i'm just wiped out financially, physically & emotionally
i know everyone gets 50 letters of rejection for every one 'in'.
thanks for your words san.

San said...

OK, Paula, I see the person was purportedly a friend of the dealer. There's also a lot of pretense out there too, along with well-meaning attempts to help out.

Hang in there.

Daniel Sroka said...

After I received one of these form letters (after also having an "in"), I called back and quizzed them why. After some roundabout discussion, I learned that the gallery wasn't accepting any work from anyone, because the couldn't sell anything and were scared of closing.

Form letters have aren't an insult. They just are.

Kim Hambric said...

Damn! Those things always hurt. I'm looking for a different word for hurt, but can't come up with a better one. Like the eskimos have 22 different words for snow, artists need to have at least 22 for rejection. Wonder if the gallery even knew of your connection, or just said "yeah yeah yeah, whatever" to your "in" person & when they received your information, couldn't differentiate it from other inquiries. As far as I'm concerned, galleries suck. I have yet to meet one I like. You know all about my attitude toward galleries though. I'm sure I'd love them if I could get in them.

Is it one of those "upscale" galleries? Those don't seem to be nearly as open as they used to. Now its all mainstream unless you have a "name". Maybe you need to find one of those inner-city "what-the-hell-is-that-thing" kind of gallery. They would definitely be more open to your kind of work.

Chin up. Tongue out. Keep going.

Daphne said...

I like Kim's "chin up. Tongue out." I'll remember that one. I might also have one finger up or a hand brushed outwards from my chin.

I know it sucks. It's devastating. It has nothing to do with you. Look how personal your art is. Galleries are subjective too, and have a bottom line to stay open. In the end no one can make much of a difference for us but ourselves. And I'm sure that San is right. The gallery probably couldn't manage another artist because of finances.

I'm sorry that this is such a difficult time for you.

Still, a form letter really does suck. It doesn't tell you why they can't take you.

Did you send them a form letter?

self taught artist said...

i liked the chin up and tongue out too, i actually lifted my chin and stuck my tongue out to experience it.
nope, i sent them a human letter. not too rambly, but human letting them know that so and so bought my work and told me I should email him my website info. Let him know I would love the opportunity to show outside of Vermont etc etc. Offered up a written recommendation from the gallery i am in, complete with financial details as to my performance there.
i'm not devastated as much as just tired of fake people.