Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Examples of artist statements

When we last spoke about Artist Statements there were some interesting responses, kiddos!  LOL.  From "No WAY!" all the way to "Hey, let's do it!"

For those who want to stretch and create an Artist Statment lets take that journey into ourselves and maybe refine who we are; or perhaps find out something we didn't know about ourselves.  I am all for that!

And the ones who don't want or need an Artist Statement, stick around and read ours, you may find some humor in them!  Or hey, we may wow you with our incredible depth and brilliant turn of a phrase and want to do one for yourselves.

OK.  First off, what is an Artist Statement?

Wikipedia says:  An artist's statement (or artist statement) is a brief verbal representation (didactic, descriptive, or reflective in nature) created by the artist about his or her own work.  It is intended to explain, justify, extend, and/or contextualize his or her body of work. Artists often write a short (50-100 word) and/or a long (500-1000 word) version of the same statement, and they may maintain and revise these statements throughout their careers.

In a 2008 survey of art shows of all kinds,  80% of the works contained an artist statement.  It was found that the artist statement "performs a vital if complex rhetorical role; when included in an exhibition proposal and sent to a curator, the artist statement  provides a description of the work, some indication of the work's art historical and theoretical context, some background information about the artist and the artist's intentions, technical specifications—and, at the same time, it aims to persuade the reader of the artwork's value."

The key here is that very last sentence:  It aims to persuage the reader of the artwork's value.  I have often thought that as I looked at a piece.  Why did this get made?  What was she trying to say with this.  Yesterday I saw a group of vintage child's cotton slips that were perforated with a single hole.  Around the hole was red dye splattered like blood.  Now why would anyone want to do that?  It was revolting to me to see a child's death in that piece.  Her Artist Statment said she worked with families whose children had been killed and for her it was a release to bring awareness of the dangers of inner city crimes to the viewer.  Sometimes the innocents are killed as well.  

That made a big difference in how I looked at the exhibit.

Artist's Statement Example

Cats With the Golden Eyes

"Cats" was inspired by my love of bright colours and this 'Yvonne Porcella' designed fabric. My three feline roommates are the 'wild things' in my life right now.
The technique is called Liberated Piecing - a free form, unstructured method of piecing quilt blocks.
The cats were embroidered by sewing machine using an embroidery card.

Title: Cats with the Golden Eyes
Year Completed: 2007
Size: 9" x 12"
Technique: Machine pieced, machine quilted, embroidery card design by Patrick Lose for Husqvarna Viking sewing machines.
Materials: Cotton fabrics, rayon and metallic threads.

This is an artist statement from Jeff Collins.  He is submitting a piece to a show and has prepared a statement for that piece.  Many times the show you are submitting to will have some general requirements for the statement.


I have this book
look at those fabulous lines
Here is an artist statement from Nancy Crow for her website gallery.  I love her work.  She is so creative and linear.  I love that.  In her artist statement, Nancy tells us why she quilts, what she quilts, and what it means to her.

So begin thinking of what you would say.  Perhaps, something that drives you.  Your passion.  Your style of quilting.  What you want to say with your work.  Where you want to go with your work.

If a piece of your work was standing alone on a wall, what would you want the looker to know about you from that piece.

Think on it and lets come back in a day or so and use that to being to write an artist's statement about ourselves and our work.


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