Breathe/ no breathe
I don’t think I have ever had this many pieces of my own work in one space before. It is larger than my studio, but crammed with works all clammering for my attention. It feels like a cross between chairing a rowdy meeting, and supervising a birthday party. Everyone is valid and valued and interesting, but some just don’t get on. Some form gangs against each other, and some just cannot resist having the last word.
I used to feel flustered and underprepared in both of the above scenarios when they went badly, but that moment where you make a great business proposal, or suggest a really great game, the crowd is on your side.
This is called curating.
When there are too many things it is confusing. They all talk at once, no one gets heard. Too few, and they risk becoming a bit lonely. Everyone likes someone to chat to, but who is secretly in who’s gang. The only way to find out is to clear them all out, and introduce them one by one. Sometimes one sits somewhere that really suits it, so they stay there, and others have to fit around them. Sometimes it goes really well until a row breaks out and you have to clear the space again.
It is a surprisingly physical experience- it makes you feel bad, squashed, confused and choked when it’s wrong. When it’s right it’s like you can breathe again, it’s exciting, and you feel great. Who knew curating was so visceral?
I have always proposed that the curator is a maker too- they can make shows out of the artwork the artists make. It is a skill.
A couple of minor observations:
Gasp. I’m choking..
Ahh.. that’s better.
The photo’s say Oi! Look over here!! The rest says meh.
It’s a riot!! clear the area…