|'Landscape-Poem,' acrylic and spray paint on canvas, 30 x 22 cm|
I used to waste so much time submitting work for exhibitions or opportunities which my paintings could never fit. I have learned to be selective and only to submit work when I feel that something suits my style or approach. It's not always a perfect rule - I was accepted for a Mark Rothko painting residency in Latvia in 2012, and did not expect my paintings to be accepted, though I knew I could complete the residency - but now I ask myself: does my style fit the brief? Do they want a wide variety of work? Figurative or abstract? I have learned that some markets are for me, some are not. There are always defining boundaries for any artist, though naturally if you have a name, most galleries will be inviting you for shows.
It is not usually a reflection on the work if you don't get the 'congratulations' email (though it can be, and I always push to improve my work). When I look at past winners or exhibitors, I get a feel for what the judges wanted.
The painting posted above was only painted a week ago. I submitted it to an open call (one of several I receive each week in an email newsletter, from the Axis artists' database), from an art magazine called Average Arts. They wanted to feature artist's work for their March edition. I literally submitted at the last minute and the next day I heard that my painting will be featured in their next edition. I am pleased because this kind of exposure, with my website details, will possibly give me a new audience with the potential for more opportunities. I submitted because their call seemed to be for a wide variety of work.
I also submitted - yesterday, again last minute! - paintings for an online exhibition curated by the Cultivate Gallery, London. One has been accepted for the exhibition (link to be posted tomorrow). All of this is encouraging.
|'Anticipating Spring,' acrylic paint and spray paint on canvas, 30 x 22 cm|
The above painting is also a new one. I feel that my work has evolved since my China trips, and from the inspiration gained from seeing ink paintings there and contemporary Chinese art.
This past week I have also submitted work to a prestigious London show, and have another two submissions to complete in the next week. They are appropriate for my work, but of course that guarantees nothing!