slightly wonky


I survived this year’s portfolio review…and I didn’t even get a lousy bumper sticker
April 5, 2012, 10:20 pm
Filed under: Drawing, Fleeting thoughts... | Tags: , , ,

I’m sure that there is some kind of sensible limit to the length of a blog title.  Clearly, I missed that memo.  YES!  You heard me…PORTFOLIO REVIEW…organized by the Cambridge Art Association.  It was an exciting Sunday of nail-biting, artist-schmoozing, reviewer-choosing, sanity-losing, and erudite-musing.  I had three reviewers:  Alvaro Camilo of Samsøn Projects, Russ Gerard of Gurari Collections, and Jessica Roscio of the Danforth Museum.  Luckily, all three of them promised me solo exhibitions!!!!!!!  Just kidding.

A.Camilo said that my work was a “good start” and that I was a “fine illustrator”.  He quickly changed the word “illustrator” to something else that I can’t remember, as I think that “illustrator” can be a bit pejorative.  He gave me many interesting ideas of where I might go next with my work.  He also suggested some places to contact to see what they think of it…like Bromfield Gallery, Kingston Gallery…The Drawing Center in NYC (why not shoot for the moon?).  One thing that he emphasized was the the art world is a social world…and just like in any industry…you’ve got to work those connections.  Overall, I don’t think that he was exactly “wow-ed” by my work.  Then again, his gallery tends to be more “cutting edge”, and my work perhaps appeared more like a quaint fish-knife.  Have I lost you yet?  Really, I don’t blame you…

R. Gerard wanted to know about me as a person…and he also talked about his way of evaluating art.  Some of the key points for him are: 1. Is there an immediate, visceral response to the work?  2.  Does it exhibit mastery of the medium?  3.  Will it resonate over time?  I did appreciate that he felt it was “gallery worthy”, and that he really liked the work.  Not bad, right?  He did, however, caution against staying in my comfort zone with my technique.  His suggestion: keep challenging yourself.  By that, I don’t think that he means try to work on a drawing while cooking the dinner and listening to my son tell me about building demolition while he builds a Lego tower in the middle of the kitchen floor.  While that would be “a challenge”, I think that the drawing, the dinner, my son, and his tower would all suffer as a result.  Just thinking about that makes me want to lie down and do some deep breathing exercises.

J. Roscio felt that certain drawings in the set can stand on their own.  She especially liked the drawing of the pear with nails:

She felt that the set overall was “almost there”.  I think that she would prefer that I edit out the earlier drawings, which are more “timid” in comparison to more recent ones.  She suggested that I could form smaller groupings…like the nails/tacks/screws as a set.  She felt that my message or concepts were clear, without being heavy-handed.  She also commented that my technique was good.  I have submitted three of these to the Danforth for an upcoming juried show…I’m hoping that she’ll be involved in the jury and will wax poetic about my sublime pears.  Or, maybe not.  Maybe everyone will look at the images and wonder if it’s lunchtime…

I have NOT completed a new drawing this week.  I’ve only JUST started one.  I got distracted with a side project of making another book for someone.  Here is the cover:

There is text on the white mark, but I edited it out for my blog post.  Looks pretty modest…until you open it up:

Then, I unleash the craziness!  Actually, my son and I painted the pages together as a “group project”.  Then, I wrote a story in the book…and I had him illustrate each page.  So cute!  The drawing on the left is a picture of a book, and on the right he drew some numbers.  Very sweet.   I really do find these “artist books” to be addictive.

Well, enough about MY drawings.  My son has learned how to play tic-tac-toe…but he kind of makes it an “extreme” version:

Basically…he draws ALL of the grids first, and you can put an “x” or an “o” on whichever one you want.  It takes ages.  My head hurts thinking about it.  Looks like grandma got bored and drew a turtle on the page.  My son must have been annoyed by that, as he added more tic-tac-toe grids ON TOP of the turtle.  Here’s another group project that he and my mom did together:

Notice that she wrote the word, “chocolate” on the page.  My son can’t read that, so I wonder if she was just lost in thought while he furiously drew an array of dots and scribbles?  I notice that his brown marker slashed through her word…again, he’s clearly disgruntled about the direction that their project took.  But what artist doesn’t hate a group project?  We used to hate that in architecture school too…until we realized upon graduating that THAT’S WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT.  My son may be too much of a “prima donna” to be an architect.  Scribbling on what someone else drew is typically frowned upon in an office…See?  Not only do you get art advice, but architecture advice as well!  The only people who get to scribble on other’s drawings are critics in architecture school on a student’s work.  Well, I’ve also seen a critic take a saw to a student’s model while she continued to provide helpful criticism…but I digress…I think I need to lie down again…

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4 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Exciting times. Sounds like the reviews were mostly positive overall. When do you find out about the Danforth exhibit? BTW I love the artist book you gave me for my birthday…it was an early edition in the series, yay!

Comment by tbonetravels

I don’t find out about the Danforth until later this month. Thanks, tbone!

Comment by slightlywonky

Love reading about your venture into the artistic world (wait wasn’t architecture suppose to be artistic too? I digress)
Who took a saw to someone’s model? Did I block that out? I’ve blocked out a lot…

Comment by Erin

Marion took a saw to someone’s model. It was a wood model, so she couldn’t just break it with her hands. I’m keeping the person who’s model it was anonymous… 🙂 I guess that I WISH that I could block out more of it…I’d probably be a more sane person as a result…

Comment by slightlywonky




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