Diane Stavola Blog

The Jury Process

I truly love to walk into a large exhibition space and see my piece hanging in the midst of all that wonderful art. What a thrill! It is the same feeling regardless of the venue or type of exhibition, but it is especially rewarding to know that the work was chosen out of many entries by a jury. It’s a boost that validates my expenditure of time and energy.

I don’t know about other artists, but there are times when I really have doubts about what I am doing. I wonder whether it’s worth the effort or not. I will read about an opportunity to exhibit and think that my work just isn’t good enough. Then I’ll jury into a show which is great. And when I walk into that room and see my piece, I always think, “Wow, I like it.” I fall in love with the work all over again. More than anything else, that is what keeps me going back to the jurying process: the falling in love with my own work.

The process itself is beyond masochistic. It is brutal to be rejected. I know that it is not necessarily that the work is bad (although, if I am honest, sometimes it is). Sometimes it is that the work is not the right color, or the juror is looking for a specific theme that the piece doesn’t match, or the juror just doesn’t get it, whatever. The reason doesn’t really matter. The pain is still the same.

Fortunately, I jury in often enough that my ego isn’t totally crushed, because no matter how hard I try to remember that the rejection isn’t personal, I still feel bruised after getting a rejection notice.

Here are two pieces I am waiting to hear about. I sure do hope I get to see them hanging in exhibition.

 Rhododendron

 Shoreline

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