Wimberley Valley Art League Show
One of my recent works, Lady w/cat, has been accepted for exhibition in the current Wimberley Valley Art League show. I am delighted to have the work showing in the gallery at the Wimberley Community Center among many other fine artists. I also feel very inspired to complete new work for the next juried exhibition in the gallery which will be in September. This will be a themed show to honor the river, which so recently rose to record levels.
Submitting my work for the show reminded me of my old Beck Center days. These juried exhibitions involve a number of artists bringing their work into the league on a Tuesday morning. The league displays all of the work and then the juror arrives. This show’s juror was Peter Arcidiacono. Peter is a sculpture artist living and working in San Marcos, TX. The gallery committee and the juror then go examine the entrants for the exhibit behind closed doors. The juror chooses the works he feels meet whatever criteria he decides to use to build an exemplary show, and picks out several works for distinction, including the best three works in the show and honorable mentions. The process of judging and selecting the work for the show usually takes an hour or so, and then the artists must return to retrieve any work that has not made the cut.
That is the part that reminds me of the Beck Center. As a youth I attended the art school mostly for theatrical studies. They put on several plays each year, and the auditions would generally occur after classes some Saturday. The hardest part of it was that typically the following Saturday the cast list would be posted on the wall of the school (usually by the donut stand) and everyone had to go look for their name on the list of people who made it into the show. It was so hard to have that moment of disappointment when I didn’t get in or didn’t get the role I wanted in such a public space. (Actually, it was the fear and anticipation of having that moment in public which was really hard to deal with!) This has the same sort of feeling, coming back to the gallery to see how many of the pieces I submitted I would be taking back home with me, rejected.
Luckily, I am an adult now, and I have learned to manage these emotions a bit better. I have also come to understand that everyone’s aesthetic and tastes are different and the impression of any work can alter based on the overall composition of the entries. I submitted three works to this show, and only one of them made the cut. I think it is the most unique and interesting work of the three, and I felt gratified that it was also my most recent piece, but it was not necessarily the most lovely or even my personal favorite (one of the ‘rejects’ is the painting I display beside my bed because it makes me feel very happy).
I am only planning on submitting one new work to the next show, since I have committed to creating a larger piece made specifically to the theme of the show. I am sure the fear of rejection will be very strong with me next go around, but I look at it as an exercise in personal strength and embracing my individuality. I will be painting what pleases me, without thought to what might ‘get me in the show.’ While I hope that other artists and the public enjoy and embrace that work, its not what is important to me. What is important is that I have this incredible opportunity to practice my craft and express my personal vision of beauty.