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I wrote of my mother’s passing last month and now I find that I am breathing in the essence of my mother more and more. I thought it would be a letting go process, but it seems that it honors her more to let her be part of me. When we are young we separate from our parents, but as I become more secure in myself, I feel that I now am able to absorb them.
Each item that I kept of my mother's I made a concerted effort to let go something of mine that was no longer needed. Often this was an upgrade, sometimes it was just an edit. But there were also vast quantities of things that went out into the universe. Some to friends and relatives...I now have many girl friends who have a piece of her clothing that they felt was chic enough to give a second life. Jewelry and scarves will go into my annual SDVAN accessory exchange this holiday. A vintage flea market of the Encinitas Friends of the Arts has been given four large boxes of items to sell in July, with the proceed going to a public art project to which I am contributing. Masses of things went to charity shops for animals or abused women.For all the items left in the house after this clearing process, we held an estate sale. We made a few pennies but the house is now emptied which is a great lesson and reminder that things are very fleeting. No matter how much we as artist think we are creating for history, the truth is that most of our efforts should be appreciated for the joy they bring in our own life times. My house and my heart are now full. I intend to use what I now have to improve the art I have already made and use up frames and supplies while I am still able. Burn the good candles, lather up the good soap. Live in the moment as much as possible. Now for a nice whiskey with a pickle back.
I was at a meeting recently and the chairman was absent. When asked for a progress report on an upcoming event from one of the staff, the response was that they were waiting for direction from the chairman. He was told that was not necessary and that he has the committee permission to design and implement the project himself. This galvanized him into action and within 24 hours the event was more or less organized and being promoted.
The staff member was fully capable before this empowerment. He had all the skills necessary to complete the task although the rest of the staff made positive and encouraging suggestions. So what held him back from moving forward? I believe it was a lack of belief in self, coupled with the daily interruptions that draw our attention away from a task that might be more important than we realize. In other words, this event needed to have a priority in his mind and he needed to bring his considerable skills to this task, decisions he had to make himself.
We can all find ourselves in this position at various times in our lives. But I think right now, it is particularly important to make decision on a personal level about how we can move our community forward. Yes, we need to all work together, but each of us has to make a decision about how we can individually lead an effort. I would love to see people taking initiative and coming forward with ideas that we can all support and promote. I believe there is a leader in each and everyone of us.
So now I make a call to empower everyone in the arts community to lead a project that support public art policies and helps to increase the awareness of the value of art. Small or large, a single effort or a partnership, I want you to feel that you can make a difference and, in fact, it is only with your own advocacy for the arts, that we will survive at a time when arts funding might be increasingly under attack.
March 20–21, 2017 is Arts Advocacy Day and we are celebrating it with a banner on the home page of SDVAN. Each year arts advocates from across the country convene in Washington, DC for the annual Arts Advocacy Day. This effort brings together a broad cross section of America's cultural and civic organizations, along with more than 500 grassroots advocates from across the country, to underscore the importance of developing strong public policies and appropriating increased public funding for the arts.
In 2017, time will be my most valuable commodity. Taking care of my mother with the help of my husband is a precious job that needs more attention as she travels through the journey of her life. We all must choose how to use our energies, both physical and mental. We wasted so much emotion on the election last year, and I would not like that to happen in 2017. So I see an efficient website as a vital part of my life.
The San Diego Visual Arts Network still favors a front page layout to include as much information as possible about events and projects in the region. We know that many sites focus on just a few current events, but as we represent 2500 resources in San Diego, this just seems too restricted for us.
In 2016, we added an automated scrolling featured event feature on the home page which is now fully illustrated and can also be seen on a new featured event page. We added a voting app for our New Contemporaries Exhibitions that can be utilized by other organizations as well. You have to be present to vote for an artist which helps eliminate stuffing the voting box, a concern for everyone in this election year. We made it easier for everyone listing on our calendar to add images which no longer have to be online.
Website design has changed constantly and we at SDVAN continue to evolve the website. We are lucky to have the help of Anand Bora of Determinant Studios when we make any changes on the site that involve coding. This has become a valuable relationship because it is so important to respect and trust a good partner for website re-designs. You need good communication and valuable input to help sort out new direction and solve glitches. Working with this creative company in India brings some time change challenges, but this continues to be a very rewarding and successful relationship for us. Mr. Bora came to San Diego for the first time in 2017 and established some relationships with artists for projects and we applaud these collaborations. . A little know fact is that SDVAN started over 13 years ago with code written in India.
The same evolving nature is true of email and event companies. We are lucky to have found John Campbell whose newly launch Smorgborg is a development of his Campbell Network which has supported us for years . Still in beta testing, we so lucky to be already using this new system that eliminates the need to maintain multiple mailing lists on different platforms. Smorgborg will be launching all sorts of new features in the coming months. When we add back end mailing list improvements, it frees us to work on other projects, and that is vital.
We are also grateful to continue our relationship with IMhosted. When the site goes down as all sites do occasionally, they are quick and efficient in helping us to stay visible. Their generous support keeps our cost down and our spirit high.
We are very involved with the North County Arts Network. We see this new organization as a pilot for other regions which could eventually join together to form a much needed SD County Arts Council. The NCAN website needs to focus on aiding collaborations, which is the most important job of a council. These collaborations are what bring a community together. Watch for a newly launched NCAN site in 2017 which will be an exceptional venue for sharing and promoting our interconnectivity.Finally I join with all of you to hope for a peaceful and diverse New Year with opportunities for all.
Your can read all the past State of the Arts addresses by Patricia Frischer here. But please blog back and watch for future opportunities through SDVAN to join in the conversation.
2016 Past A+Art Blogs including
2015 Past A+ Art Blog including
Mural by Paola Villasenor at SDAI and Art Fair Miami
Turn on, chill out and Pop up
Incubator for Innovation - final 9 teams for San Diego
London Journal 1: Tate Britain Folk Art
London Journal 2: Horst at the Victoria and Albert Museum
London Journal 3:Today's Special: Pace Gallery, Tate Modern Matisse
London Journal 4: National Portrait Gallery and Saatchi
London Journal 5: London Fashion Week and London Design Show at Tent and Super Brands
London Journal 6: Gilbert and George, Boyd and Evans, Anslem Kiefer and AI WEIWEI
A Call to Action
SD Fringe Festival Art Exhibition at Ten Street Art Center
ILLUSION: Nothing Is As It Seems at the Ruben H. Fleet Science Museum
Deborah DeLisi and One Minute Mandalas at SDVAN sponsored Mission Federal ArtWalk
DNA of Creativity Introduction at Oceanside Museum of Art
Notes on Aesthetics and Authenticity Symposium
SD Art Prize has its roots in the Turner Prize
2013 Past A+Art Blog including
State of the Arts: The Rise of the Living Artist, 2013
New Art at the SD Airportt: Flying High
San Diego Incubator for Innovation
Arts Leaders Motivations
Politics and Art in San Diego
Art Eats Food
Alternative Materials Panel Discussion - Sparks Gallery
London Art Newsletter 2013
San Diego: Identity Crisis or Identity Opportunity? March 2013
Palm Springs Art Fair, Feb, 2013
Corporate Collecting Book Review, Jan 2013
2012 Past A+Art Blog including
2009 Past A+ Art Blogs including
2008 Past A+ Art Blogs including
2007 Past A+ Art Blogs including
2006 Past A+ Art Blogs
PATRICIA FRISCHER, author of "The Artist and the Art of Marketing" has lectured extensively on marketing for artists. She is a trainer of artists’ agents, art dealers, consultant and collectors. Frischer has taken on the roles of gallerist, curator, writer, teacher, website coordinator and artist. Her many metamorphoses make her difficult to fit into any of the usual art world categories. She is a founding member and coordinator of the San Diego Visual Arts Network, (www.SDVAN.net ) which funds the SD Art Prize, directory and events calendar and SmART Collector features. Her own artwork (www.DrawsCrowd.com ) has been shown internationally and her most recent one person show was at Oxford University.