This may be obvious, but there’s something deeply satisfying about having my work on display in an exhibition.
My blog is subtitled “negotiating doubt” with good reason—as I’ve noted elsewhere: “The process of naming oneself as an artist is perilous. My identity as an artist never remains fixed and constant. It fluctuates according to my work schedule, the professional opportunities I’m given, or the time elapsed since I’ve last completed a work.”
Having my work in a gallery is an important acknowledgement of my identity as an artist. I don’t stop being an artist when my work isn’t being shown publicly, but the process of identification is more tenuous and subject to doubt.
One of the recurring ways I signal the use of a lens within my work is by representing blurred and out-of-focus images. This fuzziness destabilizes the image, and obscures detail. These figure drawings aren’t about specific individuals; I’m interested in engaging with the unconfirmed.
I’ve been thinking about drawing as a means to practice, and accept, failure.
Failure and inadequacy within drawing (and other forms of art) can be a means to engage the viewer in the creative process. When I see an unusually technically proficient artwork I think, “This work doesn’t need me; it’s totally self-sufficient.” In fact, a perfectly rendered drawing actually repels me.
The closer I get to project completion the higher my anxiety level climbs. The reptilian part of our brain fears judgment so when I lose momentum near the end of a project I know this primitive part of my brain is taking over. The best thing I can do is to try and keep working in spite of my doubts and ask for support from trusted friends.