This will be our year (took a long time to come)

The holidays for me, as for many, have been busy, hectic and even more busy. I have been extremely busy planning a benefit for my to-be-gallery, Simple Gallery and getting all my ducks in a row for the year ahead in new-gallery-life. It is a one step at a time process and has so far been really interesting to be on the other side of the business of art. My days have been filled with meetings, emails, research and development, exploring alternative business models, going to art shows, talking to artists and again planning. The biggest non-planner, me, is learning the fine art of planning. With the decline of our economy and businesses collapsing, many people are loosing their jobs, finding themselves in compromised positions and having to be thrifty in providing for their familes and selves. Planning. Many of my own friends have lost jobs or been laid off, or even forced to sell their homes. I wonder if people who find themselves in situations like these have used it as an opportunity to follow other paths. It calls to mind one friend who lost his high paying job recently, a job he actually hated. The initial shock and anxiety about providing for himself of course were the first response. But then he began to think about the things he had always wanted to do and make steps to persue them. Jobs/opportunities/paths he had always made excuses not to persue because he was afraid to leave the security of his job and current life. Is there a way for people to see the bright side in our recession as my friend has done? I keep this all in mind as I am knee deep in in the very same thing; persuing the alternative.

Acutely aware that it is a difficult time in the art market, it is hard to get artists, even friends to donate works of art for free to the Simple Gallery Benefit. Balance is absolutely necessary. Making sure I give back just as much as I take. I feel responsible for taking just as much care of my artists as they do of me. In that regard, I am finding the challenge well, just that a challenge. It is that very thing however, that has kept me from stagnation. In my own studio practice and also in starting this space. To me, stagnation is death. Finding alternative ways to make this gallery happen has been exhilarating and exhausting. It is the self driven action though that is keeping my thirst for art and life alive. This applies to art making as well. It is really difficult to create challenge and growth in artwork when stagnation sets in. When an artist is trying to break out of a certain medium, style, size et al...being apart from a community that nurtures or challenges these practices can and does create a hollow sense, or a failed sense, or a stagnating period. My question is, my homework assignment to you and to myself is: How can we circumvent this? How can you, me, we keep things fresh, avoid stagnation, keep things challenging and alive, keep change and creation abreast, persue alternative paths? And, all the while not be afraid.

I invite you. I challenge you.
Herron Clothier3 Comments