Saturday, May 29, 2010

Brief thoughts on giving away art

I used to be much more generous in giving away art as gifts for special occasions as well as for no particular reason... just to be nice. There is nothing wrong with doing that, but now that I have been painting for a while I find that I will often sell works that are 4+ years old. Out of the blue someone will want to buy a painting that previously no one else had shown interest in. So I am reluctant to give away work even for special occasions that could otherwise be sold and help put food on the table.

One makes a investment to be an artist - time, and certainly money. Materials cost money. At some point an artist has to try to recoup his investment or his career will be very short-lived (unless, of course, he has an alternate stream of income). I would advise my fellow struggling artists and those just starting out to be very cautious in giving away works of art. I am not saying it cannot or should not be done (sometimes it can lead to sales), but don't sell yourself short, and keep in mind that you have to recoup production costs at some point!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Thanks to everyone who came out for my show.

The show at St. George's was a success. Several paintings were sold, and more will hopefully follow. The organizers said it was the best show they ever had in terms of art, general effect, sales, and attendance. Fr. VanderBijl even arranged a newspaper article in the local paper which came out beautifully. Thanks to everyone else who made the show so wonderful and exciting.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Explanation of Links

I thought it would be a worthwhile endeavor to go through some of the links I have on this blog and explain a little bit about the artist and his or her work and what it means to me. I hope that in so doing others will come to appreciate these artists and their work and also help the broader public think critically and intelligently about art and artists. The first article is actually before this post!

Many people think that good art is simply "what they like." Indeed while discussing the new "New York School" abstract impressionist stamps that are available a postal employee told me that she is "... just one of those people who knows what she likes. (in art)" In other words, she can't explain why she thinks one piece of art is better or more appealing than another. To me that is a cop-out. It is quite possible to study various works and learnt to articulate what is good and enjoyable or bad and unenjoyable about it.

Linda Sokolowski

[This is the first installment of my artist link commentary.]

I was recently informed of this amazing artist out of New York named Linda Sokolowski. I find her work to be quite moving and sublime. It is very subtle and understated in its use of color, shape, and value, but yet it is incredibly moving and powerful. Her work shows how some of the greatest art can be produced with a minimal use of the elements of art, but using them in a very skillful and deliberate way. Although they are generally rather low key (i.e. more on the darker side of the value scale) I find them to be very warm and comforting. She appears to work mostly on paper, especially in monotype prints.*

(*Monotype printing is a type of printing making where only one print is made (hence the name). The image is painted onto a flat surface, such as glass or plexiglass, and then a piece of print making paper is placed on top of it, and they are run through a press.)

Friday, May 7, 2010

Art Opening - May 21, 2010

This month I will be having an art show at the gallery of St. George the Martyr Anglican Church in Simpsonville, SC. The show opens on May 21st and runs for about one month. It is something of a retrospective, as it will feature 40+ cityscapes and religious works produced from 2004 - present. Please do try to attend the show if you are in the area.