Thursday, June 23, 2011

KEEPING QUIET?

KEEPING QUIET
My only reason for beginning writing this blog in early 2007, was to find a solution to the difficulties I was experiencing handing in my progress reports to my lecturers at South West Institute of Tafe.
I never really expected other people to be reading it, or even find it very interesting? Since those early days as most thing always do it has changed shape, grow in it’s own way and for me on a personal level made the world of tapestry a much smaller place. It will be one year next month since our Graduate Exhibition, so once your days as a student are finally over, life and your art changes once more. When I first began writing my blog I could only find two other tapestry weavers blogging. Meabh Warburton, living in rural France and Lyn Hart, living in the Sonoran Desert, Arizona. How geographically different can you get? yet we are all similar in so many other ways. Since then there have been many other tapestry weavers writing blogs, so now you can visit a little piece of life, art,creativity, frustration,disappointment's, joys and all other things that go with working as a tapestry artist right across the globe.

This all leads to my current thoughts. In recent months four graduates of the ‘Tapestry Diploma’ have decided to form a group and work towards an exhibition planned for 2013. That date to some people may seem like half a lifetime away but in terms of planning and creating all NEW tapestries it will come around very quickly. Yesterday we all met in Ballarat to look as a group at some venue options, which in itself was surprising as each venue led to different possibilities,and in one instance something that we did not consider at all could completely change the entire dynamics of what we had originally planned.

So to SHARE or KEEP QUIET?

As much as I myself enjoy reading other tapestry blogs, watching tapestries quietly progress into a completed work of art. I also like going to a new exhibition.....never knowing exactly what I am going to see and look at the work with the excitement of seeing it for the first time. A bit like finding an unexpected parcel in the post and the excitement of finding what is inside. Unbeknown to me, someone who’s opinion I value, later told me that they had seen our Graduate Exhibition in Warrnambool. They made comments on some of the works and their view of the overall success of the show. Along with the comment “ of course I had already seen all of yours” Well almost one year later I am still not certain if that was a complement or just a statement that there was nothing new!

So although I will be working away, I don’t at this stage plan on showing any finished tapestries that I will be making for this exhibition. But I will talk in a very quiet way somehow about what I am doing. I also need to consider the fact that although we will all be working on our own individual tapestries, this exhibition will be a group effort and other members of the group will also not be wanting to show their tapestries before the exhibition is hung.

I am certain that everyone else out there who regularly writes a blog will have at some stage addressed these questions themselves.I would LOVE some feedback on your thoughts on the subject?

11 comments:

yasmin sabur said...

Debbie, I think your internet life changes as you grow as an artist. I've noticed that most professional artists who I admire and who exhibit in museums and have gallery representation, do not have personal blogs or websites. They may have examples of their work on a gallery site or obviously, when exhibiting in a museum, the work is featured in a catalog, which may be available online.
I suggest you rethink your web presence. Perhaps move to a website format, which can be done on blogspot and wordpress and include tabs for your statement, bio, exhibited work, news and press releases. Congratulations!

Debbie Herd said...

Yasmin, Thank you for your positive comments. I have been working on changing my blog to become more of a website style format. It all takes time and sometimes I just hate writing about myself! Thank you again for taking the time to comment. Debbie.

Ixchel tapestry weaver said...

Hi Debbie. I agree that in a weaving process, many things cross in a lifetime. It is precisely what has happened to me. I have been struggling to find ANY time to update my blog, and i have sooooo much to share, but either i weave, or I write. SO, I guess I have to do what I am doing for the exhibit I have already compromised, and IF I have some time I will try to share some other images and thoughts. This era of technology id extremely demanding and time consuming, but I have to work harder in the weaving which is my priority in life.
Congratulations and don't forget to share your thoughts if not the images of your project.

Jan said...

I feel very strongly about this issue. I don't like to post a photo of a finished tapestry (or even a mostly finished tapestry) before it has been shown in a gallery, for the very reasons you brought up.

I, too, like to see an exhibit with work I have not seen before, and I want people who see my work in an exhibit to be seeing it for the first time (at least if it's the first time it's been in an exhibit!)

It is tempting though, because finishing a tapestry is such a momentous occasion and it's nice to share. If I felt like somebody might buy it from seeing it online, that would probably change my attitude.....

Debbie Herd said...

Thanks Ixchel for sharing your thoughts. Tapestry and technology are both time consuming. Debbie.

Debbie Herd said...

Hi Jan, yes I agree with your comments. It never bothered me showing my progress reports in the past, it simply proved to my lecturers that I was actually doing something! Now that has changed and as a group we want to progress past being students. There is very little opportunity here in Australia to exhibit tapestries and they seem to have a very short lifespan, it would be rare to have an opportunity to enter a piece in an exhibition more than once. I do agree though that finishing a large tapestry is such an accomplishment that you just want to tell the world!

Michelle said...

Oh, the exhibition is a fantastic idea!

When I started my TAFE course last year, I couldn't find any information on the net from absolute beginners - and I still haven't! That's why I started writing my blog - both for documentation reasons, and so that lecturers can have a peek if they wanted to.

Even now I look at my first tapestry posts, and am amazed at how far I have come ... and I read blogs such as this for inspiration and encouragement ;)

Maybe after your work has been exhibited you can post the progress pics!

xxoo

Debbie Herd said...

Hi Michelle, I was in 5th year and the beginning of my contract when I began writing this blog. It would have been a lot different if it was 1st year!! Yes I will post progress pictures later on. Or even maybe as I am working.....without giving away what it is! Best of luck with your studies. I will go to Warrnambool for the Graduate Exhibition next year. I may see you there? Debbie.

Michelle said...

That would be great! We'll be visiting Warrnambool in September this year, so maybe a 'road trip' is in order next year too ;)

Mary said...

Hi Debbie,
I am in two minds about this. I started my blog for reasons other than textiles but it has morphed into a textile based one. I don't have a strict tapestry focus and I treat it as a bit of a visual diary. Not that many people visit and I am not at the stage of being in exhibitions yet, so it is different for me. I agree with Michelle though that it is good to see what other people are doing, especially if they are explaining what they are doing, or even problems they are having. Maybe you could put up little sections, or discuss the ideas behind the work without putting up the complete image. I know a lot of galleries, and competitions, don't want your images to have been out there before the show, so that is a complication. This doesn't seem to have been a very useful comment because I would can see both sides BUT I like visiting your blog and seeing what is going on and you have interesting links for us to follow too - thank you.

Debbie Herd said...

Hi Mary, it is a bit of a dilemma isn’t it? Everyone wants to see new work and there is no way that galleries want to hold exhibitions of works that have already been published in some way already. All you have to do is search Google images and what is on the internet is there to see. I think that most of the people who read blogs are makers themselves and are inspired in some way by watching some one else working in a medium that they are interested in or practice themselves. I doubt that potential buyers world be looking at blogs......not that I expect my work to sell. As this is to be a group exhibition I need to consider the other artists as well, the exhibition will be a team effort. I will post a few things, as yet I don’t know what......but there will be no photo’s of finished tapestries....YET......I will save that for the exhibition. Debbie.

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