I’ve received more good news recently- my work was selected for inclusion in the 54th Annual Exhibition of Contemporary Art at the VACI (Visual Arts at Chautauqua Institution). The juror for the exhibit is Jim Kempner of the Jim Kempner Gallery in New York City. My painting “Renewal” from my New Realm series was selected and it is an acrylic on canvas, 48″ wide by 24″ high. The exhibition will take place in the Strohl Art Center of the Visual Arts at Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, New York. There will be an opening reception held on Sunday, June 26th from 3-5pm. The exhibit will remain on display through July 14, 2011.
I recently received a request to publish some of my work from my “New Realm” series in the LSUE journal, The Louisiana Review. I’m excited to announce that the issue is out and features “The Red Dress” and “Dreaming.” Both of which are in private collections, but it’s nice to have an opportunity to still feature them in print. The Louisiana Review is published by the Division of Liberal Arts, Louisiana State University at Eunice. It features art, poetry, and literature predominantly from Louisiana and Southern artists. Look for my work in the Spring 2011 edition, Volume 9, available online now.
So excited- I came across some good news just after it was announced (apparently I was on the web at the right time…). I have been selected as one of the artists to be featured in the Brooklyn Art Project’s BAP Quarterly #1. This is their first full-color publication and will be out this summer. Featured on the left is one of my paintings to be included- “Symbiotic.” “The Wild West” has been selected as well, so my excitement is doubled. The publication was guest-curated by Samantha Levin (Anagnorisis Fine Arts, Curator for White Rabbit, NYC). 100 artists have been selected, including some of my personal faves- Carrie Ann Baade and Caitlin Hackett.
As an artist, I’m always learning more about the business side of the art world. I scour the internet constantly, read books and magazines- Art Calendar!, listen to podcasts, etc. Anything I can get my hands on basically. So I’ve compiled a “best of” pertaining to social media. Some of you are using these services already (as am I) but are you using them to their fullest potential? And some of you are not using these at all, which needs to change pronto. So here are the tips I’ve gained:
– Create a Fan Page for your art. This is where you will do all your marketing since Facebook does not allow such on your personal profile.
– Engage your fans with your posts and make sure they are visible (not locked under some privacy setting). When fans “like” your posts, everyone on their profile sees this, thus spreading the word.
– Ask fans questions to get them interacting and interested in your page.
– Join Facebook Groups for artists and post links to your work and introduce yourself. However, do not do this to another artist’s fan page since that is dedicated to their work and would be considered rude.
– Add to discussions, don’t just “like” a post.
– When a gallery invites you to an event on Facebook, never just ignore or decline it, always write a personal note on the event wall—leaving your name there for all to see.
– Retweet and @reply other artists to spark conversations and build your network.
– Follow people (even if you don’t know them- that’s the great thing about Twitter) to get on their radar. Follow artists, galleries, curators, etc.
– When tweeting about a popular subject, put a number sign (#) in front of it. These are known as hashtags and make it easy for others to find your tweet through Twitter searches so they may want to follow you. Example: #art, #gallery
– Do not to use more than 2-3 hashtags or you might be considered a spammer to your followers.
– One of Twitter’s most popular personalities, @GuyKawasaki states, “I find it’s worth repeating important tweets up to 4 times in about 18 hours. Typically, that would be evening, late evening, next morning and then the afternoon. Hopefully, that will catch the different audiences. But that’s enough; I don’t want to turn anyone off.”
– Make a “List” on Twitter to group people of interest- such as galleries or dealers, curators, and collectors. This will help you keep track of different groups and stay in touch.
– Join groups that are related to your style of artwork as well as more general art groups. Ask questions and contribute to other discussions.
– Connect with galleries, artists, curators, and collectors that you know (you can get booted out for spamming people you don’t know). Also connect with other professionals- your dentist, doctor, real estate agent, etc.
People who are popular in the social media world inform, entertain, and educate – sometimes all at once. If you’re a successful self-employed artist, it’s about the inspiration and the example you provide for other artists. So it’s really about them. Post videos, tutorials, news, artwork, interesting articles, music, movies that you think people will appreciate. Posts should be of substance, not how you’re waiting in line at the grocery store or that it’s Monday or Friday (we know the days of the week). Think of it this way: if you were in their position, what would you find interesting?
My latest piece is now finished and online! I had some back problems to slow me down a bit, but managed to pull through. This is the most recent addition to my “In Our Veins” series. It is a 12″ x 12″ painting, acrylic on canvas, titled “Heads II.” It is related to a previous painting- “Untitled (Heads).” I recently discussed this one and wanted to share my thoughts behind it. The concept behind this piece, as with several of my paintings, is that of humans viewing nature as a means to an end. We view animals as pieces and parts- head, tongue, rump, rear, breast, wing, etc. If they are not referred to as parts, they are named something other than what they are- chickens are poultry, pigs are pork, cows are beef, etc. They are no longer acknowledged as animals, but as food. Others are treated as trophies to hang on a wall, or turned into “luxury items” to wear or carry things in. I see animals as sentient beings- living, breathing, thinking, with offspring of their own to care for.
While humans typically treat their fellow members of the animal kingdom as a means to an end, I depict them with personalities, or what others arrogantly deem as “human” qualities (as if only humans can express emotions). For instance, many of the animals I paint have eyes that appear “human,” in that you see the whites of the eyes, or they have lighter colored eyes and not large, dark doe eyes as typically associated with animals. Some animals are positioned in a dominant stance or their facial expression is calm and serene- again, qualities typically associated with only humans. In this painting, the animals are confident and staring directly at the viewer, demanding attention and acknowledgement.
The group exhibition at Gallery 549 featuring some of my latest paintings is coming down this week. I have a few photos to share from the opening reception and there are even more on my (newly redesigned!) website at this direct link- www.amyguidry.com/events.html (Go to the album at the top left). So now I am gearing up for my next show which will be in Austin at Wally Workman Gallery. More details on that closer to time. In the meantime, check out the photos!