Friday, February 01, 2008
(Above: Gallery 80808 hung with ATCs and postcards as a representation for the coming exhibition....the postcards and ATCs pictured are some of the ones available for trade. Click on image to enlarge.)
About a month ago many of the blogs mentioned New Year's Resolutions. There was a general excitement about new challenges, studio cleaning, and plans for the coming year. I found myself reflecting on the past year, how my life had changed, and how my artwork was progressing. Without a doubt, joining a blog ring and creating a supportive, global community of fiber artists was the most meaningful development in 2007. For this, I thank each person who has visited my blog, especially those who have left a comment. I also extend a heart-felt thanks to all those who share their stitches, their photos, and their lives by posting on a blog. I am in debt to so many talented embroiderers. This is COMMUNITY.
Then, I got a hair-brained idea....I thought about sharing my cyber world with my local, physical community....share the power and fun found in Internet access...have an exhibition in the gallery where my studio is located...take a year to plan it...make it big...make the gallery a Wi-Fi location with laptops for viewers to post comments on everyone's blogs...trade fiber postcards and fiber ATCs....get the exhibit insured...meet with arts writers...invite "famous" artist/bloggers to exhibit work...write arts grants...solicit for corporate sponsorship...do something MAJOR! My mind was in a whirl of good ideas. I knew I had to take action. I started working. Now it is time for me to "officially" announce what happened:
CYBER FYBER is an exhibition scheduled for January 8 - 20, 2009 at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in Columbia, South Carolina. (The gallery's blog is here.) There will be three sections to the exhibition:
1) traded fiber postcards
2) traded fiber ATCs
3) artwork by invited fiber artists...each representing a specific aspect/benefit to Internet/blogging communication
Saturday, February 10 will be "Fiber Day", a partnership with Creative Sewing of West Columbia...complete with demonstrations
Saturday, February 17 will be "ATC Trading Day", a chance for artists of all ages and media to gather and trade ATCs. Also, there will be an International Random ATC Trade...a chance for all artists in any media to mail ATCs with self-addressed, sufficiently stamped return envelopes for a random drawing trade (arrangements are being made for out of the USA artists!)...and it has been suggested that I learn how to "live broadcast" this! (I've got eleven months to figure this out!)
I set Saturday, February 2 as my "deadline" to get this prepared. So, in the last four weeks I've made 163 fiber postcards, 130 ATCs, created a series of interconnected blogs that function like a website, uploaded all the photos with descriptions, had Doreen G proofreading, pre-arranged a trade to use as an example with Diane, created a "Wish List" of artists for the invitational section of the show (one of the hardest thing I've ever had to do) and wrote to each with an invitation, started a "budget", and organized EVERYTHING....while still maintaining my own art and blog. Honestly, I didn't think I could do it; but, I DID...with time to spare. Many totally wonderful, serendipitous occurrences happened....like invited artists finding CYBER FYBER and accepting before I ever wrote! I've even conducted several trades this week...which actually helped to teach me my own system.
Officially, the trading is now WIDE OPEN! ATCs are here. Postcards are here. I've even kept a "journal" during the past month here. Although trading instructions are included EVERYWHERE...there is even a dedicated space here. Each place has a link back to the main CYBER FYBER page. I've even got a email address specifically dedicated to CYBER FYBER. It is firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is my THANK YOU to my CYBER FYBER community. Please be part of it! All the traded fiber postcards and traded fiber ATCs will be in the exhibit...properly labeled with each artist's name and blog/website/profile. I also plan to look into having the postcards and ATCs exhibited elsewhere...a traveling exhibit.
The invited artists are listed here...with reasons for their selection. These artists have accepted (in no particular order!): Sharon Boggon, Dale Rollerson, Wanda Lenz, Arlee Barr, Doreen Grey, Jill Rumoshosky Werner, Emmy Schoonbeek, Corinne Stubson, Penny Sisto, Jacqueline de Jong, Beate Knappe, Dijanne Cevaal, Veleta Staffney, Nikki Wheeler, Lynda Monk, and Susan Sorrell. I am over the moon about this...and am only waiting to hear from one more artist!
The exhibition, however, can only be a success if all three components work....so....PLEASE TRADE WITH ME....I've been on pins and needles all week....nervously waiting until after midnight to post....it's after midnight!
Posted by Susan Lenz at 11:25 PM