This year is the fourth Landmark Art Fair I’ve taken part in. It is the only art fair I’ve ever taken part in and it holds some special memories. How was this year? In comparison to previous occasions I didn’t sell as much work but having had some time to reflect it was still a valuable experience. It’s not often I get to spend three days looking at my paintings. That’s not always an easy thing to do because it’s not just looking, it’s a constant critique of 40 or so works. And not just the works, it’s the questioning of the framing, the lack of framing, the pricing, the curation. Then throw in watching visitors doing the same while I stand near by and hear what is said between friends who have come to look, perhaps buy or just glance and wonder on. You need a thick skin at times and that is fine because we all like different things and the most important thing is to like your own work (which on the whole I do!) But the best thing is meeting people and having conversations about paintings.
One particular lady who bought a little oil painting of mine of some mushrooms was a joy to speak with. She spent a long time looking at my work before engaging in conversation. At one point she described some of the work as ‘giving dignity to the humble’ which I thought was a lovely phrase. I think that’s what made her decide to buy the mushroom still life. When I think back to other times I’ve shown at Landmark there are other people who have taken the time to stop and share their thoughts, buy some work, talk about painting, ask for advice or just smile and many of them stick in my mind and have been an encouragement.
Whether I show at this venue next year or not I have once again enjoyed the experience and it confirms to me that work needs to be seen physically as well on our digital devices as we have become used to in recent years. Showing in a public space and meeting people who are interested in art are things I’ll aim to do in the future, one way or the other. Watch this space.