Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

I just received the result from the St. Louis Mock Jury and wanted to share my observations with anyone who might be interested.

To those who have been following my earlier blog:

I don't jury with the images that benefit from a great title, but I do jury with images that are distinctly different from "same-old, same-old".

Here is the response I plan to send the directors of the show:

<"I have to tell you, I'm disappointed with the response from the juror, or were there more than one?  I don't know.
"Blending images from the real world, I create a new reality existing only in my imagination. My goal is to seduce the observer, however briefly, into thinking such a scene may actually exist."
Here is the Juror's comment:
"Are these digitally altered from originals or taken by the artist?  If so. then photography is the category
 if applying to St. Louis."
Digital Art category.  Why does the juror ask the question and then assume the answer that puts me in the wrong category?  Why doesn't he assume "digitally altered" like the category states?
..seduced... into thinking such a scene may actually exist" prove the effectiveness of my art? 

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Comment by Greg Little on February 4, 2015 at 5:52pm

Follow up...I received a phone call a little while ago from Laura Miller with St Louis Art Fair after she read my post here on Art Fair Insiders (shows us how valuable Art Fair insiders is) and Laura mentioned  that they had emailed the mock jury results to me several times using my Zapplication email but apparently they did not come through. I gave her another email address and immediately received the Mock Jury results...Thanks Laura..! Your professionalism, follow-up and concern is top notch...

Comment by Greg Little on February 4, 2015 at 11:14am

I received the initial Zapp invitation to apply for the Mock Jury while I was sitting at my computer and immediately applied.

It was stated on Zapplication:

10)     For those applicants not able to join us in person the jurors comments will be emailed to you.

I have not received any sort of emailed Juror comments or any communications as of yet. Has anyone else received any email feedback?

Comment by Jacki Bilsborrow on February 2, 2015 at 11:07pm

I love that photo R.C.  I think it is so creative and you certainly must have a very creative mind to come up with that image.

Comment by Larry Berman on February 2, 2015 at 11:23am

Digitally altered has nothing to do with taken by the artist. That's a very confusing jumble up of comments/questions. I know there was a photographer as one of the jurors. Maybe the question should have addressed the source material.

Larry Berman

Comment by R. C. Fulwiler on February 2, 2015 at 11:23am

Larry, by the way, we have discussed this before and I agree with you that digital should be under photography, but the realities of show rules and juries often separate the category.

Comment by R. C. Fulwiler on February 2, 2015 at 11:20am

Connie, yes those were the only comments I got.

Larry, the jurors comment speaks to me being in the right category when he says, "Are these digitally altered or taken by the artist".  When he says, "taken by the artist" he implies the photography category.

Comment by Larry Berman on February 1, 2015 at 4:14pm

Maybe not what everyone wants to hear.

I was a juror for the St Louis mock jury two years ago.

Despite the artist statement, I would have spoken up about the category RC's images were in. It's not digital, it's photography. Compositing images has always been a photographic technique, just look at jerry Uelsmann's work. We actually did a major interview with him a few years ago:

Larry Berman

Comment by Barrie Lynn Bryant on February 1, 2015 at 2:36pm

I should comment that I also think R. C.'s work here is wonderful, and that the juror's comment suggests something's strangely wrong with something. And it ain't R. C.'s work.

Comment by Barrie Lynn Bryant on February 1, 2015 at 2:32pm

I think there's a bit of generalization going on in this thread. I'm not doing shows in the South West, but there's bound to be similar circumstances happening there compared with where I'm doing shows. I think that judges are usually quite qualified and only sometimes a little less than qualified. I'm doing shows big and small mostly in the South East. I used to go nearly everywhere, though.

I sold all my jury pieces this fall, Thomas, with the exception of one that I'm using for jury that sold last year. That image does represent the direction of my current work. Jury images are usually my best art, and for the last three years I've had the best group of jury images ever. I'm still producing what I think is my best art and I hope the jury images will go together as well as those have in the past three years.

I see humorous work in shows. There's plenty of humorous work out there. I already mentioned Robert Kastrinos in another thread, and he sells and wins awards. He's so clever and funny, it hurts. Simple work? Ellie Ali is getting into good shows. Aesthetically beautiful? How about Christina Smith's gouache and pencil, such as her phenomenal work called A Resting Place? She gets in, sells, and wins awards.

I have had some run-ins with curators, but I've also had successes. Some of my patrons have been all around the world and in the best museums and shows around this country. The typical art fair walker may not be that person.

It's a competitive world out there. I've been beaten and rejected plenty. All I can do is work to raise the level of my game, get in where I can, and don't look back.

Comment by Thomas Felsted on February 1, 2015 at 1:06pm
Geri, I think it is the exact opposite of what you said. The jurors are soooo overly qualified elitist a who curate art to a level of snobbishness that is disconnected with the buying public.

Anything simple, humorous, aesthetically beautiful, uplifting, to the middle class patron, who actually purchases the art, is dismissed by the jury. That is why the art that sells is not the art that jury's into the show.

If the public votes honestly with their wallet, there would be a much different rubric for who gets into shows. Instead, we are all stuck with museum curators who have 35 years experience, projecting associations to movements, transcendental 'isms', basically showing off their smug prowess, get to decide what the patrons (who have very limited backgrounds) are supposed to look at. This is the problem. These jurors all come from the same 'pool' of experience, which is out of touch with the weekend warrior patron.

I would prefer a 'dumber' juror, who reflects the patrons walking the show

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