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Re: Criticism/ Rejection: Some Thoughts



<<Is the trend toward jurying books more from actual work,>>

I did the biennial book show for the Oregon Book Arts Guild for five years.
We always had the actual books to jury from. Some things look great in a
slide but when they get to you, they may show their weaknesses--like being
broken in transit because of poor workmanship. It is a real hassle to
receive, unpack, care for, repack and send all those books--sometimes we had
150 submissions for 50 spots. But all the hassles were worth it because we
could pick the books that fit our show, we could place them together and
judge if the show made sense and was not just a bunch of books, even if they
were beautiful books.  And, selfishly, we got to see all the other books too,
some of which were wonderful but not for our show.

<<Also, how often are written statements by the artist used?>>

We always gave the artist a chance to speak, through their writing, about
their work. Some would do it but a great many chose not to. If the artist
wrote we included the words in our catalog. I always thought it was important
to hear what the artists had to say. And we always wanted an educational
aspect to the show. How better to help the public understand "book art" than
to have the artist speak. That must come from my training in painting. Part
of my thesis was to write about it. It was hard. The paintings were done
intuitively, emotionally, interiorly but after the work was done you stood
back and wrote critically about what you did. I though it was an invaluable
exercise in self editing and self education.

Patty Grass

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