Welcome to the Gallery

Imagine is set in the Suffolk village of Long Melford.
This is an attempt to record the daily trials, tribulation and pleasure of running an art gallery.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

So many times in the last week I have intended to do a new post,
but life has a habit of getting in the way.
Most of the week has been spent getting the gallery back to a "sort of" normal appearance
after the last exhibition.
Because for a couple of weeks the gallery had been turned over to 'one man's' art it had taken on a little of a 'Spartan' appearance, and I must admit I liked it, sometimes less really can be more.
I decided that rather than putting as large a variety of artworks as possible back on display I
would keep it simple and see what the reaction would be.
It's strange that even though less was displayed it still took three complete days to arrange everything to my satisfaction, to me it looks really good but now I will let the public decide.
I have always liked having lots of work displayed, some of it "hidden" so that every now and then a visitor would exclaim "look what I've found" when they chanced on a partially visible object.
I suppose that it is because of the child within me, I want people to find hidden treasure.
But for a while I'm trying it with [just a little] less.
It looks good and everything displayed looks as it should, really special.

Apart from the packing, unpacking, re-arranging side of things it has been another week of
paperwork and designing.
It has been such a glorious week I have yearned to be outside enjoying the wonderful English
summer, every now and again I go outside, look at the sky and the trees and think "this is wonderful, why am I inside"?
Why? Because I have to be, I have so many things to do, none of them exciting but they all
contribute to keeping the gallery on 'track'.
One of the most important things that had to be done was to design the invitation for the
next exhibition and to get it to the printers.
I have enjoyed this [I would rather have been sitting in a field with the sun on my face] but I
tend to have too many ideas running through my head, as a result I end up doing many different versions of the invitations.
It's a bit silly really as I don't suppose many people even look twice at them, but to me it becomes very important.
This is other peoples art and I feel that I mustn't let them down, so the invitations have to be the best that I can design.
But, it's hard to focus with the sun shining outside, and inside the constant distractions of
Visitors can of course include the other shop owners and people who live in the village.

Long ago I decided that Long Melford was 'Under Milkwood' re-born.
It is a wondrous place full of so many larger than life characters and individuals.
If Dylan Thomas hadn't written it long ago then I'm sure I could have done a Suffolk version.
I will some time soon do a post about the place, which will include many of my favourites
like DUNCAN [say in a loud voice] and Paul "The Hairdresser".
Without these people my life would be less rich, but I might get a "bloody lot more done".

However, back to my 'dithering' about the invitations.
I think that in the end I settled on the best version but the front cover had me pondering
for over two hours, in the end the printers deadline made me make a "snap decision", so I
made my choice, put everything on disc and sent it to be printed.
Job done, as long as they don't print two pages twice like the last time.
Hhhmmmmm! Maybe I should have given them both covers, that way the chances are they would have printed both and at least it would have put my indecision at rest.

Having at last "cleared the desk" of this problem my thoughts turned to other
things, art and events.
In the next couple of weeks I have to do a lot of travelling, returning and collecting art, visiting
various 'Art' exhibitions, events and fairs and meeting up with friends 'old and [I hope] new'.
One of these is someone I haven't seen for over a year.
This is my friend and sculptor Toon Thijs.
Toon is from Holland and has a "larger than life" personality, very much like his work.
I have one piece of his that I had long coveted, it is from a limited edition.
The edition was of only fifteen sculptures, it was a little sad and different to his other pieces.
Every time I met with him I would ask if I could have one for the gallery, every time the answer was the same "no, too many people's want this piece", he would explain in his [near] perfect English.
So I accepted that I would never have this piece of sculpture.
But, of course at our last meeting he called out to me "John,I have somesing for you".
It was the last piece, no.15 of 15.
It is a strange sculpture called 'The Plateau", but on the occasions that I have displayed it I have named it "The Last Flight".
I understand that I shouldn't do this, but that's OK as Toon doesn't read the blog.

So, in between thinking about the people I will be seeing, and places I will visit I have also given thought to what new art I should be looking to bring to the gallery.
By chance an American visitor told me earlier in the week that she thought the work of
Rob Gonsalves
would really fit in with our gallery.
Two days later, after a lot of calls and emails I am in a position that now I would be allowed to have some of his art.
This has given me cause to hesitate and to think deeply [unusual for me], I have to imagine how it would sit with some of our other work.
It really intrigues me, but, I am going to sleep on it.

Well one thing for sure is, I am going to sleep.
In fact Irene told me last night that is all I do once I am home.
It's true.
I think I need to get out and see and photograph some life.
I must remind myself that the gallery is part of my life, not all of it.

Heh! For just a second then I nearly fooled myself.

The pictures are my two different invitation covers [guess what I went with].
'The Last Flight', by Toon, plus a detail picture which I think explains my title,
and a lovely intriguing picture by Rob Gonsalves.

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