When I was curating, I was often asked the question by artists “how can I get my work shown in a famous gallery?”. There’s no hard and fast answer to this. For artists starting out it’s a hard to make it into the newest exhibitions and to have their artwork in the biggest art galleries. The most encouraging thing for a curator to see, is artists doing as much as they can….open house and open studios events are a great way of publicising work, and although it may seem strange inviting people into a small space (which may even be a home) to view only a few artworks, you never know who will walk through your door. Yesterday I went to an open house event called #36 Made in Roath and saw some really beautiful paintings, some of which were by artist Natasha Sabatini. Just out of art school here in Cardiff, Natasha’s work is youthful – if you’d like to know more then you can visit her blog.
There are so many ways to be looking at art and these don’t necessarily have to be in a traditional museum or gallery context. The next time you see a fanzine or odd-looking poster on a street corner advertising an art exhibition, then why not go and see it? Test yourself! You may like what you see, you may not. When I went to #36 Made in Roath, I pushed open the front door to see paintings leaning against the staircase, on the balcony, and hanging in the living room. What was so refreshing about the experience was being able to see young ‘unknown’ artists unapologetically showing their work, their personal reflections, thoughts and reactions – be they on a screen-print, an etching, or traditional paint on paper.
The most interesting thing is the experience of being faced with art, being in a confrontational position where the artwork is looking to be questioned.
Just make sure you go with someone!