About two months ago I found the SAQA and Art Quilt lists. I've been reading ... lurking really! I don't post. Some of those who do post seem quite opinionated and not particularly open to other ideas. I don't have a proper, academic background in studio arts either ... but I am an artist nonetheless. I read your earlier request for this blog poll and was truly impressed with your work. I voted ... can't remember which one because they are all very, very good ... just the sort of work that I'd expect to edge my own work out in a national juried fine craft competition. Your work is sophisticated, creative, and well made.
LeeAnn and I have started a bit of correspondence off the list and I saw her comment on your recent post. It just took me back to your fabulous work and my decision to leave a comment.
One of the reasons I'm lurking on these lists is in order to understand more about the art quilt world. There's so much I "don't get". For instance, I've never heard of the show from which your work was rejected. I've never entered a show from which juror's comments/criticisms are offered. I haven't figured out where "challenges" are issued or how one enters quilts in shows in places like "Houston" (which seems like "Mecca" on these lists.) Lee Ann mentioned in a recent message "a group category". I have no idea what this is. Perhaps this is because I'm not coming to art quilting from a background in traditional quilting. I've never been a member of a quilt guild.
I do, however, enter juried exhibitions. I've had work in Art Quilt Elements (not this time but last time) and in Craftform and in several national juried shows. I've had several solo shows too and have one coming up in Rocky Mount's Imperial Center (North Carolina) with my grave rubbing art quilts and related work (Jan. - May, 2012). So ... do try some other venues! Look for "Fine Craft" exhibitions. I've got work currently going to the Mesa Contemporary. Look up "Materials Hard and Soft" in Denton, TX. There are all sorts of national juried shows that are "open media" too. If the "art quilt" world's opportunities aren't working, try the "art world"!
Also ... one more thing ... and the reason I'm writing: About overhearing negative comments. This quotation is on my friend Jeff Donovan's door. (He works in clay and drawing/oil pastels and his studio is across from mine in a cooperative setting at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios)
"Listen carefully to first criticisms made of your work. Note just what it is about your work that critics don't like - then cultivate it. That's the only part of your work that is individual and worth keeping". Jean Cocteau.
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