Claude Jones, “Bullie”s, 2015, mixed media on paper, 85 x 141 cm
My new exhibition “Bully” opens this Wednesday 7th December at Artereal Gallery in Sydney. That’s just a few days away so I am pretty excited. The sad thing for me is that I won’t be in Sydney for this event. Having already flown over to Sydney twice this year from Munich, it was just too much money and too much burning of fossil fuels to do it again. This will be the first time I have not attended my own exhibition so I am a wee bit anxious that not many people will turn up. Opening nights are a chance for friends and colleagues to show their support, to celebrate with the artist, and to talk to the artist about the work. Tricky when the artist is not there…. I feel bad about not attending, as though I am letting the team down, but an artist friend here in Munich had a different perspective. She said, and I quote:
…”Good luck Claude, that sounds pretty successful actually. International artist, can’t attend her own opening- that’s what the super famous do all the time ;-)”
This definitely cheered me up!
On the flip side, whilst opening night events are important social gatherings, they are sometimes more about meeting and greeting, networking, and bringing new clients to the gallery then they are about selling work. When I first began exhibiting in artist-run spaces I would usually sell on opening night but gradually, as my art moved into commercial galleries, it became more likely I would sell before the opening night. This is because commercial galleries invite their interested clients to preview the exhibition before the official opening. So, whilst I would love to be there to see the install, to see my friends and to toast a glass of champagne, I am hoping that my absence will not impact potential sales.
And hey, if there are too many people at the opening night it becomes very difficult to see the artwork. I attended an exhibition here in Munich on Friday that consisted of 54 artists! That’s right, one artwork contributed by each. The gallery was so packed you could barely move let alone see the work properly! At least I won’t have to worry about that!