"The Bear", Douglas McDonald, 7"x10" 1st place
Story: Real—Or Not So Much
January 20, 2023
For four days I lived with 635 entries for the juried show, “Story: Real-or not so Much”. Each morning and each afternoon, I would go over the entries numerous times, each time eliminating more artists from the mix and at night I would dream about the images. My goal was to select 60 wall pieces and 4 sculptures because this is what the gallery had room for. The process was blind—meaning I didn’t know the names of the artists—to help me be as objective as possible in choosing the work. Having been on both sides of the fence with this process before, both as artist and as juror, I knew how hard it would be to receive the “unfortunately…” letter, and I also knew that the job of choosing was completely my personal vision in what I felt to be outstanding art.
I had a few rough rules: no more than one piece by each artist and anything that I felt that was sweet, or cute, or too pretty was out. What I wanted in this show was work that was fun to look at, that was beautifully crafted, honest in its intent, and professionally presented. I was thrilled by the end result: a show that, while curated with my sensibilities, is far reaching in its scope. Because of the diversity of the work that the title of the call, “Story: Real—or not so Much”, pulled in, it allowed for just about anything. I am a figurative artist, and because of this probably leaned more towards the figurative, but still found wonderful abstract pieces to include. It was not an easy task, selecting these 67 artists, but one that, at the end of the day, I was very proud to have been a part of.
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