Tuesday, November 22, 2011


My installation
BOX-11 is an annual art show and sale that happens in the Kitchener/Waterloo region. This is its third year and it has become very large and influential. This year, there were at least 60 or more eligible entries but only about twenty three that were accepted by the curatorial jury. And only five of us were photographers.

It was quite an honour for me, my first art show. I was very excited. (I was also accepted to show some work in another art show at WalterFedy about this same time, I'll write about that in another posting).

Preparations for this showing were extensive. First selecting the works that would define my body of work had to be done. I knew what, generally speaking, I wanted to show - my industrial images. But which ones? After a great deal of contemplation I had decided on the required four images for the initial jury review. If they liked my work I would be able to submit more images for a second review. Printing the images turned out to be a big problem. I was having serious problems with the ink in my printer and could not get a consistent black. Finally, after a lot of experimentation with ink and with papers, I found a combination I was happy with. Then getting the initial four images printed and still making the deadline was a challenge.

Sample of one display area
The show is always held in a local, derelict factory (with permission, of course). Getting the factory space cleaned up and prepared for the show is a huge challenge that I am fortunately shielded from. The week before the show starts all artists are expected to attend an initial reception where we are given directions on how the show will run. We get to see a lot of the preparations at this time. The lighting system is being installed as we listen to our directions. Cabling is being pulled by our heads, we duck and shuffle to miss being bumped (we're not in any real danger, it's more fun than anything).

Darren documenting the show
Friday night arrives and an invitation only reception is being held for local big wigs and mucky mucks and fancy "people of means". (I'm not dissing this, actually. I count myself as one of that group ;). Just before the doors are open, I walked about and took this image of Darren documenting the show. Everything looked great. And there was a huge turnout. I met many people who were very interested in my images. I was inspired by many of the comments I heard (and overheard). I was inspired by how I saw people studying my images. I was tickled pink that I sold a few that night too!

Saturday and Sunday were very busy days. Maybe a thousand people came through those two days. I had great fun talking to people about my photography, about art, about the historical significance of the factories I photographed, about so many other things. I was excited to sell a few more images. It was a wonderful event.

I am talking to two interested art collectors

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