Well, I finally was accepted to ArtPrize in 2022.
ArtPrize is an international Art Festival that takes place in Grand Rapids Michigan. For three weeks in the fall, the businesses and venues in downtown Grand Rapids become a giant art gallery. The styles of art represented is an eclectic mix of 2-D, 3-D, time lapse, performance, and anything else you can throw at the wall.
The best thing about ArtPrize is that it creates an ongoing discussion of what is actually art. I have been up to the event multiple times, met with my friends from college as well as my family, and we all go around and have that discussion about the nature of art. Endless debates on what each piece says, whether that piece is actually art (or not, based on one's opinion), and the experience of seeing some really weird stuff. Weird, but extremely creative . . .
Ultimately, everyone has their mind opened. And we all gain a greater appreciation of the entire creative process. We learn to appreciate what an artist says through his/her work. We may not agree with it, but it does get us all thinking.
It was always my hope to get accepted into this festival. One lone submission from each artist. Only one. You put your best foot forward and hope to get in.
This was my third year trying. In 2020, I had entered, but COVID shut it all down. In 2021, I tried again, and was rejected by every venue. I really thought I had something powerful that year, but it didn't work out for me. I was despondent, but one can only succeed if one tries . . .
The third time was the charm. For months beforehand, I created a variety of works but nothing clicked for me. I finally had something that I was going to submit, but at the last minute, I switched it up with a piece submitted to another show that had taken me all of 1/2 hour to execute. But is was a very powerful piece, and the quick execution was due to months of working along a line of thought that had crept into all of my artwork.
The title of the piece is inevitable vi.
It speaks of our mortality in a very dramatic way. But if you choose, you can view the piece as offering a hope of resurrection and rebirth.
It all depends on your point of view.
On display at
Monroe Community Church,
1020 Monroe Avenue NW,
Grand Rapids MI