Saturday, June 22, 2019

My Saturday: Gallery Sitting and Art Making(and fun)

Photo by Michelle Barnett

I am not a ‘sitter’. By that I mean, I don’t like to sit for long periods of time. Physically, mentally and creatively, I just like to be moving. I walk everyday, do yoga, stand while I hand build and most of my best ideas come to me while I’m moving around or leaning against my favorite tree. 

As an Art On Broadway artist, I staff the gallery once a month. This is called ‘gallery sitting’ and today was my day. Gallery sitting turned into gallery standing, gallery creating, gallery selling and gallery meeting and greeting.

Gallery standing. 

When I arrive in the morning, the first thing I always do is housekeeping. I sweep the floor inside, entry way and sidewalk in front of the gallery. Then I dust the shelves, cubbies, pedestals, glass art, ceramic art, wood pieces. I wipe the finger prints off the door, clean the glass desk and water the plants. 
Photo by Michelle Barnett

Then I look around and see what needs ‘fluffing’. This is a term another artist uses to describe moving things around in a space. We have wonderful art and artists who work to set up displays but as she explained to me, moving even great displays around creates energy. That energy attracts people to look and see and buy the art. So I fluff. 

Gallery creating. 

This week I worked in my studio hand building new vases and jars. I love making. What I don’t love is waiting. Clay is a unique medium that requires you to work quickly and slowly and patiently. Clay has to sit but not too long. 

I made the body of these jars on Thursday, then they sat. Next lids need to be cut, tops and sculptural elements need to be added. Depending on the weather, the sitting time is anywhere from a day to a week. Summertime means the jars needed attention by Saturday at the latest. 

So I packed them up and took them to the gallery with me. 

Gallery selling, meeting and greeting.

I had very few visitors in the morning, but after I set up my workspace and starting working people walked in instead of walking by. They came in and looked all around the gallery. Some were interested in what I was doing. Some were not. But they all had more interested looks on their faces, asked more questions about the art and artists in the gallery. 

Happily, I did sell art. It wasn’t mine, instead it was a piece by one of our newest artists. I made the sale, wrapped it up and found a new piece to hang in the empty space which required a little more fluffing to make it all look good again. 

Standing and working on my jars, fluffing the art and cleaning all sent out good energy. That energy brought people in to look, talk and take home something beautiful. Gallery sitting, standing and art making made for a fun day. 

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