Monday, May 14, 2012

6 Tips for Creating your Artist Statement

Christopher Amend
Anima, Connate
Dennis Fonfara
Artist Statements can be a huge challenge for an artist and we have all been forced to write them.  If you are like many artists, you have probably wondered something similar to "why do I have to do this, no one cares? People want to see my art not read about it"

The simple answer is that you cannot always be everywhere your work is to explain it to people and as much as we may want our art to speak for itself, it doesn't  Your artist statement should help others understand you as an artist and your work when you cannot be there.  Here are some tips that may simplify the process and help you find the correct words to describe your work.

Jerry Wood
Wind Dancer
Jennifer Howdshell
Sun Goddess
1. Free Write - Sit down for at least 5 minutes and write about your work.  Don't stop writing.  Most of this will be garbage, but if you are like most people there will be one or two good words and maybe even a good sentence.

2. Talk out loud - Talk to a friend or family member about your work and have them take notes.  Often times you will use different language when you speak than when you write.  Again most of this will be garbage, but there will likely be something worth salvaging.  I tend to have my husband help with this task.  He is an engineer so he is intelligent but not necessarily familiar with art jargon.

Mack Brislawn
Alison as Gunslinger
3. Ask for Help - Another technique is to allow a friend to write about your work.  You can give them as much or as little background as you would like.  Do not forget to have a friend proofread your statement.

Felicia Follum
Phenomenal Woman
4. Reduce Reuse Recycle - In the past I have written individual statements for each show.  More recently I have started focusing on a more general statement about large bodies of work and my work in general.  A more diverse statement can be altered for shows but can save you a significant amount of time in the long run.  You can alter this statement to describe a specific piece or a process but also have a short version for a journal or other publications.

5. Sleep on it - If you have time, let you writing sit for a couple days between proofreading sessions.
Alanna Reid

6. Education - Be sure to join us on June 23rd for our Shameless Self-Promotion workshop and learn how to "Differentiate yourself with your artist statement."  You will also learn what it is, how to write it, and why you need to have one.

For more help writing your artist statement come on in, check out our Facebook page, or give us a call at 307.742.6574.  For more information about our workshops be sure to check out our website.

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