Art Teacher On Spring Break Part 1

A Rigid Filter for a Liquid Interaction, cut paper, acrylic, marker and colored pencil on panel, 11.5"x11.5" 2012

Today is day two of my full-time studio work days during my week off from teaching.  Even though I miss seeing my family greatly (who I normally visit during Spring Break), I feel like it was the right decision to stay behind and work in the studio. I’m feeling immensely excited about the two collaborative projects I’m involved in this year (a little more about those later), but I’m feeling confused about where to go next in looking for art galleries interested in my work. I am beginning to understand how big of a gamble it is for gallery owners to take a chance on a new artist, and I imagine that I need to connect with the right person who’s passionate enough about what I’m doing to take that chance on my work.  The quest for a kindred spirit continues!

My collection of polite rejection emails leave me with two troubling questions: is it the the content or the technique that is not working for commercial galleries?  I sometimes feel like I need a group of art professionals just to be brutally honest with me and just tell me what they’re really thinking. My ongoing experiment in communication with galleries often leaves me with filled with mystery and self-doubt in my artistic process. But in my studio, surrounded with my materials, I have never felt more fascinated by my creative direction.

As a means of exploring alternative ways to share my work with the public, I’m participating in two collaborative projects this year that have my mental gears working overtime. The first is a series of mixed-media drawings I’m starting on that will be projected to create backdrops for the multicultural dance group The Embodiment Project.  Today, I’m meeting with a scene and lighting designer to help me figure out what’s possible for presenting my work in this venue.

The second amazing opportunity, is working with collaboratively with writer Monica Zarazua and visual artist Nicole Dixon to create a body of work that responds visually to Monica’s short stories.  This project is just in the planning stages, but thrilling nonetheless. Working with written imagery feels like a natural extension to the subliminal influence of listening to audiobooks while painting.

I felt it important to start my day with a blog post because I needed to give myself a reminder to renew my patience in finding artistic recognition. All of the veins or art-making I’ve been exploring: acrylic landscape paintings, cut paper works and mixed media drawings, are laying the groundwork for an uncanny internal world that I haven’t figured out how to categorize.  On that note, I need to get to work and hopefully the words will come to me gradually.