With the recession, there is no doubt that the art world has been hit and for some strange reason, I have been “recession-proof”. I don’t know why, perhaps it’s just where I am in my career. Don’t get me wrong, I am not rolling in money, but I am doing ok. Believe me, I know a lot of artists who are on housing benefit etc just to get by. It can be tough, but I watch fellow artists continue to paint there way through the hard times, which surely can’t last forever.
I visited Edinburgh Art Fair yesterday and it was an interesting experience. Over the past few years, I have got to know quite a few gallery owners and it was strange in a way to see so many I knew under the one roof. Last year, the saying was that the “best seller at the Edinburgh Art Fair was the coffee”. Well, it seems that this was the case again. Every gallery I spoke to seemed to be genuinely shocked at how poor sales were. For a gallery owner, this must be hard. Exhibition stands are expensive and then there’s all the transport and advertising costs. The recession is definately still with us but I left the art fair feeling completely ok.
I think that’s because like many other painters, I do it because I love it and feel somewhat protected from the sharp, front-end of art sales. Artist’s need sales, otherwise they could not continue to paint. It’s a balance and today I was in the studio painting, feeling excited by new work which I am creating and Edinburgh Art Fair is already a memory.
So, I would like to say a public “thank you” to those of you have have bought my artwork and prints over the years and also to those of you who have suported me with emails of encouragement, filled in the guestbook or replied on the blog. Believe me, in a negative world, it all helps.
Last week, I heard a fellow artist’s work described as “shit”, and a piece of mine was described as “f***ing horrible”. There was more of this negativity at Edinburgh: one gallery even said that the place was full of “crap art” and that at least they vetted the galleries at the Glasgow Art Fair. Art snobs are great fun, especially in a recession!
So I shall remain thick skinned thanks to your support and hopefully sensitive enough on the inside to keep painting in a manner that people appreciate. If I ever become an arrogant art-snob judging “lesser beings” then please let me know