Saturday 13 January 2024

Starting the new year with a bang!

Ok so I’ve overcommitted myself. It’s natural, you’d say. Don’t worry about it. But I feel like I’ve let someone down if I promise to pay for something then pull out a month later. In the past month I’ve been very busy and here I am, looking down the barrel at insolvency or, worse, making my name objectionable in London art circles. The outfit I’m talking about sticks up posters in the Underground but charges almost 500 pounds, which is like 1000 dollars Australian, and I have to pay my car insurance. Or maybe I don’t. Maybe I can get along without car insurance. This isn’t third party insurance that covers people who sustain bodily damage as a result of an accident you cause. This is insurance of the car itself.

I think I’ll let the car insurance go.

In 2023 I applied to a number of galleries and I have six shows booked in ’24. There are another six proposals out there that haven’t been answered, plus one that I put in in ’23 that’s so far gone unanswered – I am sure because I’ve checked my emails like three times. While all this has been going on I’ve been making art, but again paramontages and combines that rely on computer work. I haven’t done any watercolours since early December.

This period of a month has been validating, I feel as though for the first time I have something that I can talk about. Certain documents are starting to come together, as well, notably the ‘Artist statement’ and CV. I have tried to be thorough with these but starting from nothing in August made me wonder what I should say. It seems easier now, partly because I can write down the actual shows I’ve been selected for, but that’s not the only reason.

One thing that I’ve been doing while occupied on the computer is moderating a Facebook group. I think it offers something that people can benefit from, a feeling perhaps of acceptance, a space where their ideas can raise a response but in a safe way, a place of confraternity and ease. I like that people can post their drawings or paintings. I see the comments other people leave.

The other reason I’ve found it easier to write about making art is that I sort of better understand the basic principles behind it. That’s not to say I don’t welcome feedback from outside. I do, and have in fact asked for comment from people who are well-placed to give it.

On the poetry front I’ve also done some work, getting back to a website (Submittable) I had forgotten about entirely since I last used it in 2013. That’s the last time I was rejected. It seems like when it comes to literary arts I’ve got a thin skin. I also found an editor, but I have to get some more funds ready so I can pay him – (come now it can’t be that hard right? – well it is!

I will just keep on moving forward. With any luck I’ll get an acceptance for my poetry and so won’t have to wait a decade in order to look up the website name again.

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