Thursday, May 26, 2011

Life is a Big Bowl of Questions

Dana Todd Pope & Ramona D Lindsey
My eight year old daughter explained that, "Life is a big bowl of questions."  (Of course, this was her response to my asking why she has so many questions for mommy.) But this young philosopher was correct.  Life does revolve around questions and our search for the answers.  Questions were my reason for attending Sisters and Friends Afrocentric Fine Art Show in Bloomington-Normal, Illinoison May 21st-22nd.  As an emerging artist, leaving over a decade of service as  a public school educator, I have many questions about the life and responsibilities of a professional artist.  I've attended many fine art shows as a patron, but never as an artist.  Hence, my first question, "How do artists prepare for a fine art show?"  

Abstracts by Dana Todd Pope
My husband, a social media network guru, introduced me to my newest artist friend and painter, Dana Todd Pope.  Dana was a featured artist at the Sisters and Friends show.  In a quest to find answers to my question, I volunteered to travel with Dana to Bloomington-Normal, Illinois to help her set-up for the show.  She quickly accepted my offer.  I learned the work begins weeks before the show.  First, an artist must handle logistics such as travel arrangements, hotel rooms,  and securing display panels.  Weeks prior to the show she spent an untold number of hours creating new works insuring she had a consistent body of work.

More work by Dana Todd Pope
After arriving at the show, Dana became a curator.  She considered the flow of the room, her art's story, and lighting to decide the placement of her work.  Then she became a foreman directing the actions of her laborers to build panels, display walls, and remount art work disassembled for travel.  Finally, she donned her fancy dress, stilettos, and glamour girl make-up to become a premier promoter of her work.  She greeted art patrons, told her story, and closed business deals.
Watching and supporting Dana was the best answer to my simple question.   I learned things from one day of volunteer work that I could have never gotten from a book.  My mother always said, "Experience is the best teacher and there are no dumb questions."   I’m glad I heeded my mom's advice.   My art career will be so much better because I took the time to ask questions and seek answers.  What questions are you asking?

1 comment:

  1. Well said Ramona! Experience is definitely the best teacher.