reflection 3: How did I get here ?
The process of achieving new opportunities is a Sisyphian task, researaching the right kind of opportunities, planning, exploring, writing proposals, re-sizing jpegs, testing out ideas, trying to not get too excited by the possibilities … and the success rate can be dispiriting… last year’s success rate was 7/17 proposals ! success being for small local-ish projects; institution/gallery based opportunites with/without pay being much more difficult to break into.
I talked to Judith Alder, a mid career artist with similar ambitions, about wanting to make new work, being ambitous, looking for opportunities that test and move one’s practice forward – it seems that I am not alone in swinging between being optimisitic, ‘nothing ventured nothing gained’ and go-getty to feeling that being an artists is like having an unwieldy and expensive obsession. There is so much competition and relatively few opportunites that offer space/time to develop new work and maybe even get paid for doing so.
Making Space has been a great opportunity to intensively test my practice, try new approaches and examine my shortcomings, and as one of the 7 succesful proposals it was completely exhilarating. It has also been a great way to be associated with an established and well respected art venue. But there is a residual feeling of wanting to do much much more so that the only way forward is to keep on applying and, like many other artists, create my own opportunites.