I took down the Transformation show today at the Glenrose Rehab Hospital. I am happy that I was able to show my work there for the last three years and make, in a small way, life more bearable for the patients there. I am always happy to return my "babies" aka paintings home.
I wish I had more places to show my work, but it looks like there will be no shows in Edmonton for me for the 12 months or so. I applied to more than 30 calls last and this year - not one was accepted. Maybe it is for the best, because my decision is to focus on creating more art.
I asked myself "How important is it to show my work publicly?", and realized that I thought that it is very important to me at this stage in my career. Every painting, every series I do, is well planned (or not so well planned sometimes) as an idea and then executed over time using my ever evolving techniques. A lot of thinking, planning, and physical work goes into every painting I make. When it is done - I do want to share my creations with the world! Showing my work in public also pushes me to work harder due to deadlines. However, this desire to show my art put a lot of stress on me, and I put a lot of emphasis on getting validation from external sources.
After so many rejections, I felt discouraged. Then I reminded myself that art is subjective, and that I am not interested in creating art that looks like some famous artist's work. It is hard to pave your own path and express your own ideas, using your own techniques... Creating original art is uncomfortable, not only for the artist, but for the audience as well. In order to avoid further rejections and potentially falling into a despair over it, I decided that I would focus solely on creating art in the next year. Once the stress of writing applications and anxiously awaiting the rejec... i mean response is gone, I feel this freedom to just create. My own transformation as an artist has already been quite surprising, and I am looking forward to what this next 12 months will bring out in me.
I will continue sharing my art publicly, just online when it is not possible to show locally. I am grateful for all my friends all over the world who are there for me and who join me on my artistic journey.