Sunday, November 20, 2011
Waving Goodbye to this year's East Austin Studio Tours
At this point in the EAST tour, many of us are happy to get our lives back, that's for certain. EAST really consumes us for two entire weeks in November. It makes for a busy show season in the fall and really makes for a lot of personal contact, which is something I really love.
One of the problems with being an artist, especially where I live, is that I don't get to talk to patrons all that often. So many times I find myself shipping crates of artwork off to here or there without having any contact with the shows. Seldom, if ever, do I get to attend the shows my work is in. Unfortunately, this is just a fact of life. I can't travel around and meet everybody as much as my artwork can.
The East Austin Studio Tour changes all of that. It's mostly about personal interaction. Everybody really wants to come out and meet the artists. It's not confining the artwork in stuffy galleries, it's more about getting out, enjoying the days, seeing the studios, and talking to the people who make art. That's what I love about it. It's a lot of work, yes, but it's fun that we get to do that. No shipping crates for us all this time!
Well, I hope you had a great EAST tour or, if you live where there is not an East Austin Studio Tour, I hope you get to get out and see some local art where you live. Art and artists are everywhere. Sure, it's great to have something like the East Austin Studio Tour but, even if you don't have an event like this, make the time, go and see some artwork. Get out an explore your local artist studios. It's not all that hard to do. Most artists will open up their studio to you upon request and it's really great to get out, meet these folks, and see how artwork is made in your neck of the woods. Likewise, if you're an artist, I would encourage you to go ahead and let people into your studio space. It's a great way to talk to folks in your community and to share what it is you do with the rest of the world.
There's nothing "magical" about the EAST tour, in fact, many artist communities could do something very similar where they live and work too. It's just organizing, deciding upon a date, maybe getting some sponsorship, and deciding to get together and actually do it. I have to say that, in Austin anyway, it works wonders. We all love getting out and seeing the work, not to mention meeting lots of folks we would not otherwise get to visit.
Tomorrow's another studio day for me, although I have to admit I'm going to miss all of the hoopla of the tour. It's going to be very quiet without all the visitors, that's for certain. So, even though I might be waving goodbye to EAST for the year, I'm now going to pop into the studio on a hopefully more inspired and recharged note, with some fresh ideas and some new insights to the creative process that EAST has afforded me.
Until next time...