When is it time to move on from juried shows?

LisacallLisa Call is at it again. Stirring up all kinds of mischief on her blog. Thank goodness! Somebody needs to keep us on our toes and question the status quo.

Seriously, Lisa is introducing an important (and controversial) topic. Her postings are about the contemporary quiltworld, but much of what she (and her commenters) have to say could apply to other sections of the artworld. And, yes, the artworld is sectioned!

Lisa writes:

I’d like to see the top artists leave many of the juried shows behind and move on. This would leave juried shows as the place for those just starting out – absolutely essential – I’m not saying all juried shows should go away. But I think the relative importance of such shows is the problem.

I wrote about this some time ago in an article called “Move On.” It’s hard to know when it’s time to move on, but essential to your career. You can’t stay in juried shows forever and expect grand success. But, if the quiltworld is as Lisa describes, it sounds like there aren’t just one or two that don’t know when it’s time to move on, but that it’s an epidemic. That stymies everyone! Everyone is being held back.

I’m not summarizing her points very well, but you should read Lisa’s original post about helping quiltmakers gain respect (link no longer available). While you’re there, be sure to read all of the comments and her follow-up posts.

Image: (c)2007, Lisa Call. Structures #50.


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6 thoughts on “When is it time to move on from juried shows?”

  1. New Work and Inspiration

    How To Become a Successful Artist – the usecase

    Today Alyson Stanfield linked to my post about respect as an quilt artist from her blog with some of her thoughts about juried shows. Interesting read.
    Ive been thinking about this prickly topic quite a bit the last few days (okay I cou…

  2. When I look at the winners of juried shows, it is always a feeling of deja vu. The same styles, tone, and messages seem to attract the eyes of the judges, time and time again. It’s not so much that the same artists keep winning, but that the same TYPES of artists keep winning. I think of juried shows as the fashion world — all following the trend du jour.

  3. I agree completely with Daniel – I am a landscape photographer and the trend du jour in the photography world is large (like 40″ x 60″) color photographs of people, sometimes odd looking people, sometimes featureless people doing unimaginative things, sometimes normal people in odd poses but in every day situations, whatever, you get the point – black and white landscapes are just not cutting it these days. In response to this I have started to search nationaly for juried shows that would be more accepting of my work, where the landscape photograph can be appreciated and not cast off as “not edgy”. (Anyone have any suggestions?) And what ever happened to the Juried show, as in many jurors, instead of the Juror, or single juror show. I’m tired of the single juror shows, where it’s down to one person’s opinion.

  4. Brett, that is too funny, your description of what is popular in photography competitions is exactly what I’ve seen. I call it the “depressed-looking person in a depressing room” style.

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