Join me....

I believe that art enriches and informs our lives everyday in many positive ways. Sharing those experiences, whether as an artist or as an appreciator, is part of the pleasure. I welcome your comments and hope you find something of value: a laugh, an insight, a new idea or just a happy moment. Enjoy art!

Friday, July 10, 2015

But Is It ART?

Yikes. I am closing in on the deadline for a solo show which opens on August 6.  When I selected the theme of "Seeking Sanctuary: places & spaces that renew the soul" I was full of imaginative possibilities and creative thinking.  I was brave and determined to be bold in my interpretation of the theme.  The delightful gallery manager gave her blessing and said "Go for it, go all over the map, have fun."

And now...I am experiencing cold feet, self-doubts and a profound lack of that bold bravado I spouted just months ago.
The little devil of fear keeps hinting that perhaps I have ventured too far off the map, too far out in left field.  He states that folks will show up, smile and then turn and whisper "but is THAT art?!"

"...even I could do that...."

Is it ART? oh my, who knows?  If scholars far wiser than I can't define what is and is not art, how can I?  And you can talk about 'art for arts sake' or 'art that is metaphoric' or even 'art that provokes.'  (Just don't say out loud that dread phrase: "My grandchild could do THAT.")

So I write to request that when looking at art, (any art, not just mine) to ask yourself what the artist might have been thinking.  Was there something he wanted to say or something he wanted you to ponder?  I will kiss your feet and hands if you bring that attitude along when you view pieces of mine that are a little bit odd or different.

Just how odd does it get?  Can you imagine someone finding 'sanctuary' in the peace and quiet of a hotel room?  I can.  And how would you present that short of painting a hotel?  Hmmm, is there a way to suggest  the portal to a hotel room?  Not sure, but I tried.

No, this is not the final piece, just parts of it.  And to be honest my number one supporter looked at the piece and announced "I don't get it; I don't believe you need a key to a sanctuary."  And that is OK, a legitimate response because he gave it some thought ... thank you very much.

And how could I express my belief that most of us so often hold our sanctuary in our own hand and don't even realize it?  I had to make a hand....I had to have something symbolic in it,...maybe a variety of things the viewer could try out.  And perhaps they still won't understand that a feather represents the sanctuary of an empty nest or that a seed reminds me of all the sanctuaries we have 'planted.'  Maybe they won't like it at all but maybe....someone will.  And then it will be fun to know that an off base idea of mine touched a chord in someone else.  But I will never know that unless I try.

I will be sharing more about the gallery and show dates in another blog soon...I hope if you are in western North Carolina you can come.  And yes, there will be plenty of lovely pieces representing the gorgeous sanctuaries that man and nature have provided us, so please come and enjoy those.  But I ask you to give an equal chance to the pieces you may not "get",  Who knows?  Something may click!  But at least you will have given the artist an opportunity to share a thought with you... that is, if you can break the code.

Mysteriously yours,


  1. If you have to ask, "is it art?".. that a pretty good sign that it isn't. That doesn't mean its not valid expression.

  2. I like that Joey: "a valid expression." Good phrase. But when art museums present controversial work they rarely refer to it as "expressions,". However maybe they should. It would take the edge off of some peoples immediate dislike of a piece that is not in a frame and matches the sofa!! Thanks for the appropriate comment.

  3. What a brilliant thought provoking post!
    Cindy, I am so excited for your show, your endeavor, your art! I just know it will be an amazing experience for you, and a delightful treat for the folks who get to see it. And although I know that little monster in the back of your head asking all of those unsettling questions is a part of who we are and what we hear, I hope you can sufficiently quench your monster's thirst for that negative speak with something distracting for it; and you can just keep blissfully creating your uniquely amazing "Sanctuary" art. It's going to be incredible, Cindy! I know it!


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