I did an Upmarket in South a few months ago and in chatting with another vendor who did work similar to mine, we both agreed that Art in Trinidad is valued by the minority. I mean the minority accepts its value and are willing to pay for it. The majority like Art but don't see it as an investment.
When an Artist has paid his dues and becomes famous only then is his Artwork seen as valuable. When he dies then it's even more valuable, e.g. Boscoe Holders work. But as a new Artist it takes a lot to stay positive about your work and to continue painting.
I have evolved over time, but in a direction I didn't plan. I now do a lot more small acrylics for the markets and less watercolours. This was not my intention but I've been pulled by the public demand versus my inert internal yearning.
Why? Why has this happened?
1. It happens because every Artists wants their work to be appreciated, purchased and even demanded.
2. Compromising gives us a level of vindication, because the art sells but should we need that? Should we compromise? I feel not, but we do.
An Artist should paint because they are compelled to and create what they feel inside. Not paint what sells. I have fallen into that trap. Its hard to avoid. You don't want your work to pile up, unseen, unappreciated, unsold.
So what do I do?
I to an extent, have no choice. Maybe I can do both. I paint what inspires me but in a size that is "sellable" for the Markets and I paint what I feel inside on a bigger scale for my exhibitions. I learned from my last Exhibition/Pop Up Shop that to be able to sell my large pieces, Upmarkets are not the way.
I am going the route of the Formal Exhibition. I am planning one next year and it will feature my large pieces only. I will invite guests formally to my opening and make a production of the entire event. Lets see how that goes.... : )
I've also stumbled on an abstract artist Nancy Hillis and she has an onlineworksop:
and here I started releasing my creativity even more.
I completed one piece based on her direction and it was far different from my normal simple, geometric, flat design. I will continue following her worshop to see where it leads me.
So guys thats all for now. Check you next week. Love you all and continue to follow me and send in your comments via my website: www.gafra.org.
I also have a new blog called www..wordpress.com/Gafra_TAS. All bout my natural hair journey. Check it out. So until next time.