Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tour of Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

I just completed a tour of Charlotte's new Bechtler Museum of Modern Art.  

Thank you to the Arts and Science Council for this treat!  And as an arts agent, I also have to give recognition to the Bechtler family for their enthusiastic patronage of artists.

The collection, which includes about 1,400 pieces, includes many of the big names in Modern Art.  Only a small part of that large collection is on display at any given time on a 9-month rotation basis.  An intimate detail about each piece of art that draws you in even closer and helps to dissipate a foreboding sense formality about the art is where in their living room the Bechtlers displayed the artwork for their own enjoyment.  In fact, the set of furniture that the Bechtlers actually owned and used in their home is also on display.  It's very easy to imagine the family eating dinner in a pseudo-museum that was their home and the Bechtler Cherubs climbing on top of a large statue of one kind or another.

To see the care an attention that this collection of art receives should be comforting and reassuring to any artist who is in a quagmire of self-doubt.  Go to the Bechtler Museum and be inspired.  Go to the Bechtler Museum and be energized.  Go to the Bechtler Museum and be motivated.  Then go straight to your studio and paint your heart out, sculpt your heart out, mold/print/photograph/design/CREATE your heart out.

Bechtler Museum of Modern Art 
Arts and Science Council

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Painters and Photographs

On Friday, Jan 8, I went to see the artwork of Osiris Rain and Joshua Gage at the Dialect Design Gallery.  The exhibition is called "American Dream."  During the q&a session, Osiris mentioned, almost in passing, that he doesn't use photographs - he paints live.  I thought that was interesting, so I asked him why not.  His response referenced his pedigree of education, saying that he was not trained that way.  Osiris then said that the naked eye can see more than any photo would ever hope to.  Which only piqued my curiosity even further: what do you think of artists who do use photographs for painting?  His chuckle told me he was going to hold back and "be nice" with his answer.  I asked him to be brutal, and he put it simply: it's laziness.

Now, Osiris Rain is a realist painter.  In fact he is a member of the International Society of Realist Painters.  Could his self-imposed, unforgiving standard be justifiably relaxed for the abstract artist?  I would like to pose this same question to a few more artists and see how they came to their decision.  Do you agree with Osiris Rain?

Saturday, January 2, 2010

New Year's Resolution: Make It Happen!

Whether you need to create more art, to sell more art, to find studio space, to save for art supplies, to improve your technique, the best New Year's Resolution is - to Make It Happen!

Lose your remote control and find time in your schedule. Forget about the new season of ____, and start thinking about your new line artwork. Never mind fantasy football; plan your sales strategy. Disregard the vortex of distractions around you. Focus on the artist that you are and the needs you have for succeeding as an artist. Cross those needs off your (mental) list. Give yourself everything you need to be successful. And don't wait - make it happen.

Happy New Year, and I hope 2010 is a fruitful year for you!