I was trying to think of what to write in this month’s newsletter, I have been working through new ideas in my studio and thought that might be a good start, and then I saw a work of art today that made a massive impact. It brought me to my knees. I was moved in a way that I rarely am these days, an interesting irony as an artist, but alas… It was an installation by Chiharu Shiota titled “The Key in the Hand”  It was impeccably crafted, compelling, smart, and of it’s time.

I bring up this piece by Shiota because as an arts organization by, and for, professionals we seldom talk about the thread that binds us, the work itself. We should be dedicated to the betterment of our individual work through conversations that addresses the content and quality of the objects we make. Can you say that you are doing what you can to bring the best possible quality to your work if it is devoid of content beyond the unspoken act of making? Or is the daily act of making craft in itself content enough in the twenty-first century? Maybe your work is outwardly evocative of a deeper conversation? If so, how? And do your ideas translate well? How could it be better? Are you still moved by the work you make? Are others moved by it??

Both Erin McGuiness and myself will be will be hosting a conversation about content and craft at our respective studios in Berkeley and Petaluma on Wednesday May 25th, from 6:30 – 8:00pm. These will be free to all ACGA members, and open to the public for the price of an ACGA membership. Bring a printed image of an artwork that compels you to speak, or even a piece of your own work, or one from your collection that you think might fit within with this dialogue. Also, bring a plate of food to share, as these conversations seem to go so much better with food 😉

ACGA will be holding more of these casual discussions throughout CA, beginning this month, keep your eyes peeled for more information!

To RSVP to either of these events, please go to our Member Meetups page.