The art of rejection and the rejection of art
Perhaps they are both the same? As an artist rejection can be a harsh thing. After all we use art to express ourselves! So when somebody rejects your work, they are in a sense rejecting your expression of how you see the world. It’s important to know (and most of us do) that your art is not going to appeal to everyone. Yet, as artists, we put OURSELVES OUT THERE, time and time again. Knowing that some people will snicker, or even tell you to your face that they don’t like it.
This past week, a couple of guys posted this on my Facebook wall: “that’s not art, that’s shameful”.
They were referring to my UNpresidentED flag painting that I posted asking folks to vote for it. I came up with the idea to paint this when my talented friend sent me the prospectus for the juried “Neuw Politic” show. Of course those guys that posted that were on the opposite end of the political spectrum. And that’s okay, we’re all entitled to our perspectives. The whole idea of the piece was to mirror WHO is in office now. So I guess that a president talking about trying to fuck a married person, or by being a “star you can grab ’em by the pussy”, or that racism, “beat em up, I’ll pay your lawyer’s fee” is fine with them… To each their own, but I was not brought up that way.
The point is we create because we love to
And we get lost in our emotions. We make those emotions come to life on canvas, paper, wood, metal, glass, whatever the medium. When creating, the emotions pass through us and into the world where someone else resonates with them and enjoys them. And even if we never sold a single thing, we would STILL create. Why? Because that is why we’re here and it’s what we are inspired to do. As the late Wayne Dyer would say “when you’re inspired, your “in-spirit”. I love that, because for me, that’s profoundly true.
Right brain party
When I create, time flies, I forget to eat, telephones ring and i never hear them until i look at my phone and see 3 messages. How many times do you forget to eat because you lost track of time? The list goes on… There are infinite ways to be creative, but the point is whatever you are doing, you do it out of pure joy. The world and all its ‘maya‘ fades and for the time spent in front of the easel I am wholly alive. Free from the bondage of time, or the real world. Sometimes it’s hard to let yourself get into your right brain when the world is constantly bombarding you. Just like it can be difficult to paint abstract when you’ve been told to “stay in the lines”. And as an abstract artist, the lines are not always your friends… so much to UN-LEARN…
Why is art marginalized?
We are pretty much told from a young age that you’ll be a starving artist. There’s no money in art, get a real job. Society in western culture, sure does dismiss the artist and it starts at a very young age. Heck even now the government has slashed funding for the arts. Where would we be without art though? Look at all the logos and icons all around us, they are born of an artists’ vision. For enjoyment we read, watch plays, listen to music, go to art museums. All these fun and enjoyable things enrich life and they’re there because of artists. As Winston Churchill once said “The arts are essential to any complete national life. The State owes it to itself to sustain and encourage them… Ill fares the race which fails to salute the arts with the reverence and delight which are their due.”
The rejection of art
And so finally I come to the point of what started this entire post in the first place. You see, last night they released the jury results for the Nuew Politic show and my art was rejected. When I first read it, I was a sad and felt dejected. In my mind, I went through all the reasons it was not good enough, and how it could have been better. But then I said ‘hey, I’m one step closer to a win!” Besides, lots of people resonated with the flag and I’ve been contacted to do another, plus I’ve already sold prints of it. And you know what else? I would do it all over again, just for the cathartic feeling of getting it out of me….
You are brave..
My friend Elieen told me this week – “you are brave” and I didn’t really know how to respond, so I didn’t. But after thinking about it at length, perhaps as artists, we are all brave?
Don’t let rejection get in the way of making art
Some people will like it
Some people won’t
Lots of love from me and my totally messy studio!
P.S. BE KIND, smile, laugh and love often!!!!