Happy New Year!
I had planned on posting this before the holidays, but I was travelling and things got away from me. On a recent visit to an academic institution I observed the following:
This got me thinking about the success of visual works of art, and when and how they fail. I think a work fails when it becomes acceptable to place a giant planter full of plants, and all kinds of information boards in front of the work.
I commented on this to a friend who was with me at the time, and she stated that in the many years she had visited this institution, she had never noticed that sculpture before. How long has it been there? How long has it been completely ignored by all who chance to see it?
I tried to find out more about the sculpture, by the attempted examination of the placard on the wall adjacent to the object. This was difficult because of all the items blocking the path. I managed to snap a quick photograph of the placard however. The quality is not that great due to limited space restrictions caused by other objects. It can be viewed below.
This post is not meant merely as a criticism of those that own the art. They have their reasons for posting information in that area. It could also be argued that this is a rationale for the periodic exchange of new works in any given space. A fresh update of several works a year would revitalize the area and provide a different feel each time the work was switched out. Rather, this post is meant as reflection on when a work of art has become tired, and has failed to capture the interest of the viewer.
As artists it is our job to communicate with the observer. Part of this conversation takes place in the context of how the art work is presented, which may or may not be in our control. However, the value of what is expressed in the work is under our control, and it is this issue that artists must focus on.
Upcoming Calls to Artists
January 31, 2012 INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION $3000 in
cash awards; valuable prizes provided by Datacolor, global leader in
color management solutions and color communication technology; a group
show in Manhattan's .NO gallery; an online exhibition and a feature
article in IMPRINTS Magazine Spring/Summer 2012 issue. All mediums,
styles and schools of thought to participate. Experimental and mixed
techniques are welcome. Only 2-D work is eligible. Entry
fee. Click here for more info.
January 30, 2012 CALL FOR SKETCHBOOK PROJECT ENTRIES Art House Co-op
is proud to announce our brand new project: The Limited Edition
Vol. 1! The Limited Edition is a collaborative series of art books
created by 5,000 artists from across the globe. Anyone from
anywhere in the world can participate in the project. Sign up to
receive a blank sketchbook in the mail, then fill it up and send it
back. Your work will be cataloged in the Brooklyn Art Library in NYC
and published in the Limited Edition art book series. Entry
fee. Click here for more info.
February 1, 2012 INTERNATIONAL REALIST PAINTING COMPETITION In
addition to scholarships and hosting the largest online museum
dedicated to traditional painting, we hold one of the most prestigious
competitions for living artists who paint in the realist
tradition. This year we are offering $50,000 in cash awards including
$10,000 for Best in Show. Participants can compete in 6 categories:
Figurative, Landscape, Animals, Still life, Sculpture, and
Drawing. This year we are also introducing five new awards designed to
encourage creativity and ambition in the arts: Most Creative, Best
Social Commentary, Best Portrait, Most Ambitious Work, and Best Trompe
L'oeil. More info here.
March 31 2012 The St. Tammany Art Association announces the 47th National Juried Exhibit July 7-August 11, 2012. Juried by Miranda Lash, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the New Orleans Museum of Art. $2,500 in awards. E-mail email@example.com, call (985)892-8650, or send SASE to St. Tammany Art Association, 320 N. Columbia St., Covington, LA 70433. More info here.