So here’s a little more about me as an artist. This is the piece that was reviewed in the Honolulu Star Advertiser (unfortunately they don’t provide the access to the archives freely on the internet) & was a part of the HI/NY show in 2013.
It ties in to a greater body of work, my senior portfolio for graduation, but this piece is important to me because it’s kind of the “in your face” work to disprove any prior doubts classmates and other professors had in me. Prior to my final semester at UH i had a very grueling one with a professor who is a credible, well-connected artist, but didn’t help me grow & improve, which i think is one of the biggest sins an educator can commit. That’s not to say i wasn’t trying to learn, just, her criticism came without other outlets, lacking inspiration for me to look to.
Now people not from an art community can argue, “well art is subjective, so what does she know?” Even i have asked myself that. People have a love/hate relationship for art they don’t understand, & it’s all about the “individual experience” someone has with a piece, so supportive friends and family asked, “how can she judge your work as bad?“
And who knows, maybe it still is “bad art.” What do i know? But the biggest criticism i faced, was that my work was too “stylistic.” Now, after being told this, naturally, i inquired about what she meant. nothing was ever clear enough for me to fix. i looked it up in the dictionary, googled images for examples, asked other artists, other professors, asked writers, family members; no one had the same definition, or explanation of what made my work too stylistic.
So that brings me to my final semester, feeling defeated, & completely out of place. what was i doing graduating with a BA in art, when everything was too “stylistic”?? thankfully, my final professor in college pulled me out of my funk. she always had new suggestions, specific criticisms that i could actually work with. telling me my proportions are off is something i can fix. suggesting i build layers of charcoal more in certain areas to create intensity is something i can work with.
this piece was shown alongside an abstract piece done by my critical professor. i am proud of what i’ve done, because it is an example of my ability to adapt, & is proof that with help, i can make worthwhile art.
i hope you enjoyed the little back story to this painting :]