I wrote this in the early summer in June and sat on it for a while. Be curious what you think.

Okay, so this is cool. I have been making pictures to be ahead of the blog so I've got current and good stuff to post. Wait a minute! This may not be good, right? Making work for the blog? What is that about? What about the prints? Aren't I a print person? Have I made the prints yet? Well, no. Change can come hard to someone my age, but I'm working on it. The Sea change is this: the new work is posted first, discussed and put out there for all to see, then later prints made perhaps out of necessity (i.e. exhibition and/or sales). A far different thing than the way it worked in my sphere of knowledge with my  colleagues or myself in the past. Humbling really, but exciting too. Reach a larger audience? Check. Prescribe the sequence in which the imagery is looked at? Check. Be able to break it down, bring out your points image by image if you want? Check. In fact words go very well here, good ones that is. 

So, my friends, this is the convention: 

Make work, make prints, get show, frame prints, hang show, everyone comes to the opening reception, because the gallery has sent them a postcard, work is liked and purchased (or not), show hangs for about a month, almost no one comes after the opening, sales die, there is some press, the show comes down and is returned to the artist.

And this is often present practice:

Make work, post work on site and in blog, create buzz or controversy or passion for work, gallery carries the work as some prints are made, sales are result. Show? Maybe but not totally necessary either. Contact with artist? Probably for the sake of sales.(Buyers like to get inside the work.) Momentum starts when a few prints are made and builds from initial blog post to whenever, a show or shows, a self published book perhaps or work held at the gallery for "after the show" sales. Most gallerists will say that the important work, i.e. sales, is done in the "back room", meaning through one to one contact with customers, past purchasers, collectors, etc. This can happen anytime.

Seems upside down somehow. Of course, what hurts is that so few will see the actual prints. This work you've slaved over, used all your experience and expertise to make so very beautiful, that is consummate and that you are proud of. On the other hand, with the click of a mouse an infinite number can see your newest and/or best work whenever you wish. All you have to do is get them to go there with a click of their mouse.

Ah, the times they are a changin.

This is the commodification of all that is art but it sure is current thinking, isn't it?

Topics: Commentary

Permalink | Posted September 1, 2014