What a whirlwind the last month has been!
Sort of goes with March winds, but actually Paris has been very unwindy. Cold, dreary, gray, but not windy. However, the big news is that the sun has finally appeared to the accompaniment of birds and cafe chatter and screaming children and barking pets running wild in the parks.
(Image: Mark Dutcher, Havilah (installation shot), February, 2009. Courtesy of the artist and Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles.)
The Curatorial Team spent a good portion of the last week sequestered at ArtSlant HQ, barely aware of the sun outside. We were selecting the winners for our first Showcase competition. Thankfully, with hundreds of images swirling in the head and lots of discussion and some arguing, the winning group was finally settled upon last night.
The overwhelming consensus? Art lives and artists are indomitable. Put some feathers on that!
If you ever need a life affirming moment, simply look at some art (or even better lots of art). The sheer power and determination to create, to communicate, even just to continue, overshadows everything else. There absolutely is a silver lining and it is called life.
(Image: Mark Dutcher, Sylvester (Do you want to funk?), 2008, acrylic, oil, paintstick, feathers and canvas on wood, 92x72x4 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles)
To go along with all of this positivity I received images from Mark Dutcher, a Los Angeles-based artist whom I had first met during a Rackroom interview. Somehow looking at the images of his current show, I became conscious of the renewal that had occurred over the past week. It was a renewal brought about not just from the sunshine and the open windows, nor simply from the completion of a difficult task, but it was a renewing of some basic hope. From having spent hours and days practically non-stop with those hundreds of artists from around the world who had submitted their work for consideration, my attitude had been tranformed. Work aside, good, bad, indifferent...none of that really mattered. It was their drive to get up each day and go at it again that had affected me deeply and catalyzed that sense of joyful I AM that I felt.
Put some feathers on that!
(Image: Mark Dutcher, Shafter, 2008, Oil, acrylic, glitter, feathers, foam, and wax on canvas, 25 1/2 x 10 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles)