Wednesday, 25 September 2019

new ventures at Artspring Gallery - in which I become a shop keeper.

skyscape at dusk

Summer is over.

And what a summer it has been;

  •  a solo show at Rye Art Gallery, endless summer days cycling back and forth to my studio saying 'hello' along the way to the sheep on the marsh.
  • customer of the month at The Fig in Rye ( I have allowed myself this accolade on the basis of the number of good friends who visited the show and shared food and drink with me at the cafe after inspecting my work in Rye Art gallery). 
  • record numbers of visitors to Camber sands over the roasting bank holiday weekend, causing utter and complete mayhem with their vehicles parked illegally from Camber to Jury's Gap, and leaving a sea of litter to be cleaned up.

bank holiday offerings

All of these excitements meant that I have not found time to create any new work, but have tried really hard to look up at the sky rather than down at the litter strewn ground.

So many beautiful clouds seen from the top of the dunes at the end of summer days.

And still days when the sea merged into a hazy sky, the horizon lost from view.

early morning, camber sands

Golden light on the dunes, with Pontins pretty in pink.....

And then there is Artspring Gallery; my new venture, designed to lure me away from proper work and into a new era as a 'retired' person.

Artspring is run by an artist cooperative, and the gallery is in Tonbridge. 

Getting ready to join the group has been another big challenge; works to be selected, greeting cards to be made, and labels to be created.

Making labels has to be the worst task for an artist. But spurred on by the high standards of my fellow artists, I now have classy sticky labels and even more remarkable, an inventory of my work.

I realised that I was losing the ability to list works, editions, sizes, frame types without endless rummaging through bags in my studio. So now I have a list. And it works!

No more difficulties remembering where I am up to in an edition, or how much a piece costs. It's on the list. 

So today is my first day alone in the gallery. Just me and the art.

Port Haven by Sarah de Mattos

My first day as a 'shop keeper.' 

OH ( my other half) is not impressed. I think it is a step down on the social mobility ladder in his view. 

Do I mind? 

Not a jot.

I am running an art gallery, and that suits me just fine.

I am surrounded by colour, and have a fine view of the traffic in Tonbridge High Street. 

I have rare birds to talk to, and lots of coastal and water themed works to remind me of summer.

Rare Birds by Paul Chave

Design 122 by Kate Hasted

Aqua beach bubbles by Hilary Shields

I have my soup and a cheese sandwich.

I have an exercise area for virtual skipping between the table ornaments and the jewellery cabinet.

And I have my laptop. So I can write this blog.

Hopefully I will make it through to 5pm without mishap. 

I just have to make sure I don't end up as the gallery treasurer; I had to count the petty cash four times before I could get it to add up to the figure from close of day yesterday. Which makes me wonder, how do I know which of my four countings is the correct one? A philosophical dilemma.

And what happens if I need to use the facilities out back? Do I lock the front door and put up the 'back in 10 mins' sign? 

OH informs me that I should never put up this sign, but instead say 'back at 14.01' or whatever time is appropriate. He is speaking from the horrific experience of going to purchase a newspaper from the shop a few yards from our house and finding that very sign ( back in 10 mins) on the door. Only they weren't....... ( back in 10) and he was not happy. 

So no sign..... just a very quick dash..... and back in 30 seconds.

And now time for some more skipping. Before I die of an overdose of sedentary (in)-activity.

Luckily there is a sprung floor......

works by me