Julia Trops you are harsh!

Today’s blog post has to do with a few comments via email regarding Art Shows & Curators – Calls to Artists Part 2:

From WP:

I am not a TWEETER but had to say that as well as being informative, I found this article and it’s preceding half; intelligent, provocative and brutally honest … even harsh girl! As a newbie in the fine art world I shall remember your criticisms and instructions regarding exhibition preparation and Curator respect.

Thanks WP!! I appreciate your comments and in my email back to you I said:

Re the blog, yes, I am fairly straight and to the point, and extremely direct most especially when writing. I’ve been involved in the arts community here for about eight years now – very heavily involved. I know about 95% of the professional artists, and with the number of shows I have done (coordinated/curated), trust me when I say these things needed to be said. The same old missing information each time ie “oh I don’t use a calendar, I find it too confining” bull shit. Very frustrating. Harsh it can be for some, but I have always hated beating around the bush when a direct arrow is quicker and more efficient. I can be diplomatic when the occasion requires it, but in giving information I seldom find that effective, and the military was a terrific teacher in honing both those skills. I’d rather be direct and say exactly what I mean than be wishy washy and have miscommunications because of potential word connotation or definition conflicts.

Especially with artists – we tend to be very frou frou, (but) if a concept is said bluntly, we get it. Usually. lol! Most people appreciate it though the majority prefer to have their egos or emotions stroked. And to be fair, me too – but only when “deserved”. Today’s society is so politically correct that we have to constantly say nice things to each other – ugh, pain in the ass. 😀

btw, I don’t use an eraser in my drawings, and my charcoal strokes are strong and bold. That should tell you multitudes. lol!

An addendum to all this with further thought this morning at the gym: to me there is a difference, a huge difference in being harsh and being mean. When I say the things I do, it is to give effective communication, to give information, not to be mean or derisive. I do tend to use humour, although some may consider it a little too dry, to illustrate a situation, but in all fairness, I am usually quite accurate.

When I say what I am saying to my fellow artists, who are also friends and acquaintances, the ones who know me know where I am coming from, and they know that I am saying this to help, not to hinder. They know what I have gone through in the past in trying to organize shows for myself and for them*, and if I had the presence of mind to say all of this at the requisite time, then most assuredly, I would say it. Some have heard me rant, it doesn’t mean that I hate them or other artists, it means that I am frustrated at the situation where they don’t know or haven’t been exposed, or haven’t thought.

What is my goal in posting this information on the blog? To get these artists to have the PRESENCE of mind to use their initiative to think about what the coordinator/curator goes through… what can make their job easier. Don’t you think I absolutely love the artists who cross their t’s and dot their i’s? I do. I think they are glorious for their professionalism, they walk on water, and I respect them highly. LB you are one of them.

It is a raising of the bar, and I know the artists in this community are up to it. They just need to know what to do.If they think I am being harsh, then I would tell them “Shelve the ego, and listen to the message. You might learn something.” But, I’d say it with a smile, of course.

*upcoming blog post

One Reply to “Julia Trops you are harsh!”

  1. Hi Julia,

    I am fairly new to your blog, but I very much appreciate your straightforward approach! I also find dealing with other artists is frustrating because of their “frou-frou”-ness! This applies to galleries that are run by artist-types as well! I’ve had a few dealings with galleries where I’ve just had to shake my head and wonder how they pull it all together!

    I’ve always said that I’m more left brained than right brained, which is unusual for an artist, but it really helps with the whole organization and scheduling thing!

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