Sunday, July 27, 2008

Occasionally a little rain does fall

When I decided to create this blog, it was done with the full intention of keeping you informed of my activities as they related to my artwork. I decided, that the information I would share would be both the successes and the failures, of course, hoping that the failures are few and far between. I don’t think you would want it any other way and I think that because you are signed onto this blog, you above all others will help to celebrate the good, and understand about the not so good.

If you live in the Gettysburg area or plan to visit that area soon, and you want to view, and of course purchase, some of my original pastel paintings, I would recommend that you make a point to stop in at Gallery 30, located on 30 York Street in Gettysburg, just off the town square.

Ok, with that now said, and now that I’ve perhaps added another stop for your itinerary while in that area, here comes the rain.

The reason I suggest that you get to Gallery 30 to take in some of my pastels is because it may be the last opportunity to see them in the Gettysburg area. I received word from the new gallery owners, new in that they have only owned the gallery less than a year, but they have recently sent me word that they would like me to come and remove my pastels from the gallery.

They currently still intend on carrying reproductions of my work, which have been selling really well and they would also like to show the few small oils that I’ve thus far created depicting the battlefield, so those are positives. Still, this is not written without a bit of sadness as anytime incidents such as this occur it is not without a bit of sadness, but upon reflection, they’ve occurred in the past, and I’m sure they’ll occur in the future. It’s the nature of the business. You use them make you stronger and become more determined.

I’ve been showing my pastels at Gallery 30 for approximately four to five years. During that time, I’ve found many new friends and supporters of my art, which of course, includes many of you who are reading this. For that I am grateful, and I look forward to continuing that friendship, and hopefully seeing all of you again at an artistic event in the near future.

Under the previous owners, I was consistently one of the top selling artists in their stable, especially during the annual History Meets the Arts weekend. The new owners unfortunately have not enjoyed that same success when it comes to selling the pastels. They’ve been much more successful with the prints but with the originals, not so good. The reasons for this could be anything, from the down economic times shadowing the country, a change in focus/philosophy at the gallery, a lack of education on all fronts as to what is and what is not a pastel.

Those familiar with the art world would know how the pastel medium has exploded over the past fifteen years, and I’ve been fortunate to be a part of that explosion with many sales including a recent sale to the Bank O f New Hampshire, an article in a major art magazine, several recent successful one man exhibitions, and my participation in a number of national juried exhibitions, resulting in many top honors and awards in those shows. However many galleries and/or their staffs have not kept pace with this explosion, and often those visiting galleries can’t get past the idea that a pastel is one of those craypas we all encountered in elementary school art class.

Though my pastels will no longer have a home in the Gettysburg area, I can’t help but feel a sense of accomplishment, not just in the friendships I’ve developed with many of you, but because, in many ways, until I entered the fray, people interested in purchasing or owning a piece of artwork that offered a lasting impression of their visit to those pristine fields in South Central Pennsylvania, the peace and serenity, people who sought that reconnection, were out of luck. The majority of historical art, or art relating to Gettysburg is typically full of blood and anger and many people, though they may or may not know the history, don’t leave the battlefield with that memory. To that end, I think with my pastels, I offered something refreshing, something new, something soft and gentle of the battlefield. I think my approach to the battlefield has also helped to inspire other artists to pursue the same approach, as I’ve certainly seen, in my recent travels back to the battlefield, more and more artists painting the land for what it represents, a beautiful landscape, and second, lands upon which something traumatic occurred. Hopefully I continue in that vein with my oils.

My time at Gallery 30 is not over, just scaled back. I will not say that it isn’t disappointing though, for it is, however as already mentioned, it is not unusual in this business and I shall persevere. I will not cease to work in pastel either, and I hope that you won’t look on these latest events adversely. A little rain has fallen, which I shall merely gather, to drink when my throat is parched, or to feed a flower that might fall beneath my eye and upon my canvas. It is water in the stream as it gently strolls through the forest, or upon the rocks of New England’s shore. It is a rain that brings inspiration to grow in other and exciting ways. So off we go; exploring onward, around the next bend, through the open field, in our continuing quest for the colors and stories found in “Painting the Soul of America”

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