Thursday, December 8, 2011

About Art as Business

I have tried, heaven knows I have tried, to think of what I do as a business. I have even taken courses and did an almost one year workshop about art business. And I’ve read the books and done the online research. But the truth is that I would (and do) do it whether or not there is anything that resembles a profit. Now how can you call something a business if profit is not at the top of the priority list? Could you stay in business while the prime concern is the quality of the product, hang the cost? I have no limits when it comes to what I will spend on materials. I challenge anybody to have a greater variety of paintbrushes or pastel colors than I. I shop for food and clothing at the local discount stores but my studio materials are top of the line, state of the art. No expense spared. Frugality at home but in the studio I scrimp only when it comes to framing - which can always be upgraded by the purchaser, while the end product must be immutable.

Interesting, isn’t it? How one changes over a lifetime? There was a time when I had a salary which provided discretionary income; this I chose to spend mostly on furnishing the house we lived in as a family and some other happy indulgences. I had every pot and pan Le Creuset made and loved to spend time in the kitchen. I entertained cheerfully and spent a lot of time on the phone with dear friends. I sewed, loved making my clothing. At the same time I had a full time job, dealt with a demanding husband and raised the four who went on to support the conversion of the mother they knew into the person I am now. I don’t think they will ever understand how much I owe them. And a good thing that is too. No repayment possible.

I am now candidate for worst housekeeper by anyone’s standards, laziest cook and am an all around shiftless and unproductive individual in most areas outside my studio. And happier than ever. Who knew?

The image above is Orange-Violet, a new acrylic collage on paper, 23" x 17", framed and hanging at Piante gallery in the Abstractions 2011 exhibition. 
Erma Bombeck: “Cleanliness is not next to godliness. It isn't even in the same neighborhood. No one has ever gotten a religious experience out of removing burned-on cheese from the grill of the toaster oven.” 

9 comments:

  1. La Ingrata PreferidaDecember 9, 2011 at 1:39 PM

    This ingrate doesn't care how indulgent you think your operation is. Your work makes me happy and your cakes are still the best. Keep 'em coming!!

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  2. this could be the story of my life too! How many of us are there out in this big world?

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    Replies
    1. Lots, my dear. Lots and lots.
      And many of them very talented as are you.
      Joan

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  4. My guess would be that there are a great many. I have enjoyed meeting a number of them.

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  5. Mike Yanke was inspired by my confession of household neglect to write this poem. I am ever so grateful.

    There’s dirt in the corner
    And dishes in the sink
    There’s old cups of coffee
    And laundry that stinks.

    There’s grime on the windows
    The carpet is threadbare
    There’s dust on the table
    Order is nowhere.

    But up on the walls
    A different orientation
    With colors and shapes
    And wild imagination.

    Rectangles galore
    All framed and well hung
    A fantastic collection
    And I’m still in room one.

    So onward I go
    Through room after room
    The walls are so vivid
    They seem in full bloom.

    Corners and dishes and
    Laundry and such
    Can always be cleaned
    But there really is no rush.

    For being an artist
    And bringing the world joy
    Is like offering a young child
    A special new toy.

    Paint all day long
    Don’t vacuum or clean
    The world will be better
    With your artistic hygiene.

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  6. Amen to the poem. And a middle finger to housekeeping. I'm glad you have your priorities straight.

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  7. Yup. As Erma said: “Housework can kill you if done right.”

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