I did write a post on Sunday, let it sit on my computer for a few days and then re-read it today and instantly decided I clearly could not post it.
Last week was a bit of a come down after the illusion I was under the other week that things were moving forward. It does seem to work that way I’ve noticed. A few good weeks, a run of excitement and positive feelings then….crash!
Last week was a crash, bang, wallop. After finding out about the invites and the mistake (which I think I did take quite well) things got frustrating. The gallery didn’t appear to be helping me out at all, in fact they seemed to be largely detached from my concern, resistant…maybe even defensive? All I wanted was the file and to get it re-printed but everything that should have been simple, got complicated and I felt I was running around chasing my tail. (Accept I don’t have a tail and was in fact just chasing my arse….clearly a lot less fun)
Without going on too much, I got more and more stressed and then had a fuck it! moment – I’m not taking on the cost of their mistake. If they are willing to let it go out with errors then who am I to fight to change it. I was sat looking at this invite splashed with all their logos and just couldn’t fathom in the end why I was trying so desperately hard, on my own, to make it right. I have been working away for months on the work for the show. Financially, I am being squeezed and bent from all directions, something is going to burst. I don’t want it to be my head, so I’m backing off from this problem now and focusing back on my responsibilities, the work!
There’s more to tell regarding the Hertford studios but I’ll just have to save that treat for another day. It’s just one piece of bollocks after another here!
But hey ho I’m still smiling…..or maybe it’s morphing more into a painful grimace. Isn’t art fun!
Oh dear. There’s been a bit of a blunder…. and I’m not completely blameless. Tuesday night I happened to look again at the invite to my exhibition and almost instantly I noticed an error with the spelling of my surname within the text, twice! Cue cold sweats, buzzing ears and a sudden sickening to the belly. This is the proof copy which I agreed to. I did a Usain Bolt to the telephone eager for Amisha to calm me by telling me casually that there was nothing to worry about, they had noticed it and all was well.
This however, did not happen. What I got was an email the following day:
‘Unfortunately, once the sign off has been received from the artist invite goes to print. I have had a look at the invite and although the the surname is incorrect in the text, it is correct in the main title line. It is not ideal but the proof was widely circulated and also approved by you. I am sorry about this regrettably we are unable to reprint the invite due to budget restraints.’
I consequently stewed over it for a few days trying to decide what to do, whether I could let it be, get out my Tippex, or call the whole thing off!
So now a kind of calm has restored itself to my mind. I feel I have no choice but to give it all up…..
Well maybe that is a little extreme;
Instead, I’m going to just pay to get them reprinted, but what a bummer. The most amazing thing was having a gallery pay for this kind of stuff and through stupid carelessness and taking others judgement for granted, I now have to start paying out again. What a wally Christina ‘Byrant’, ‘Byryant’!
That lesson can at least be ticked off the list of things to learn, I guess. Look to the positives.
Always be thorough in checking the proof. (especially with those vital details like NAME!)
I never thought I would be so delighted at the prospect of a 7 day week at work, that’s earning work rather than art work, but next week I’m even enthused and a little excited about the prospect of a bit of customer service. You lucky public! Each day I’m going to hear that imaginary MA fees savings tin – chink, chink and will be smiling.
Ok, so it’s a bitter sweet blessing, as of course no time in the studio, but right now getting my savings together for the long term is much more pressing. I knew this summer was going to be a write off for both studio work and any chance of getting out enjoying the sun…that’s fine. It’s not forever.
Luckily I think I’m pretty organised for the exhibition in July and the time off for setting up is all arranged. Dee from the Hertford Studios text to say the studios are well on their way to being complete in a few weeks and enrolment info from Wimbledon has come through.
I’m feeling positive again, yay!
Life at the moment is a lot of just getting on with it; getting on with the sewing, getting on with the soldering, getting on with the traces, getting on with the decision making. It’s all turned in to the very practical period of doing. ‘Doing’ is boring to comment on; ‘doing’ is a happy, safe, comforting, friendly place. My fingers are occupied so my brain can mull but just float on that surface and gently feel the passing of time. ‘Doing’ makes me feel like a worker, a noble grafter with purpose, even if the job is just sewing a length of material or constructing a mini wire door. Let me just hum and do, just occasionally branding myself with the hot solder iron and slowly scratching away the ends of my fingers with jagged wire and needles.
Sometimes it really feels that the action is where the sense lies; it is the core, where my practice lives, it’s the friendly face, where things are more in harmony with my being, more mellow. It’s the calm in my head, in between the searching out and the making sense, away from the eyes and thoughts of others. It’s the eye of my storm. Quiet and deceptively simple.
I’ve managed to get some good time in the studio over the last week or so and this week hopefully is going to be a good one too for getting things done. On one hand there is the fear that the over time I’m promised at work won’t materialise or alternatively it does and will leave me no time to get all the pieces finished for the exhibition. For now though I have time to get on with the art work so I’m keeping hard at it.
Probably the most interesting thing I did last week was go to the BCA to see Alex Pearl’s exhibition. Right on the high street, opposite the hustle and bustle of Bedford’s Saturday market was the understated and wonderfully endearing world of Pearl. Through reading his blog I felt I had had a little feel for the humorous look at his own sense of failure and anti-climax. The exhibition was to me a wonderful celebration of our limitations and disappointments and one I feel I can really identify with…. the not quite brave enough. It was such a mix of playful, pathetic, witty, with an underlying sense of some pitiful disappointment. They had an interview with Alex; it was completely fascinating, having read his blog for a while, following his many humorous stories of the blunders and embarrassments, to see him (that sounds a bit stalker-ish), but listening to the interview its hard to differentiate between the work and the person, (not that he’s pitifully disappointing) but the work is so him or maybe it’s just so us, so real life, and acceptant and reflective of something we try to avoid and mask so much, the failure. I was so glad to have seen it. Thanks Alex!