Audience – The Essential Ingredient
As an artist I like to say that I make my work for myself, not an audience, and that is true. I am my own best fan and worst critic, and I often make work that noone else will ever see, but exhibiting your work is an essential part of being an artist. It can be frightening or rewarding, or both at the same time.
Over the ten days of Floating Land I saw many people looking at and taking photographs of my installation. It pleased me to see that many made time for quiet contemplation, which is what the daytime iteration is all about. At night people came for just a quick look and stayed, mesmerised by the enchanted landscape made by the projections.
There were many positive comments. Some were even moved to tears, which is something I have never experienced before as a response to my work. Something about the gentle nature of the festival and its environmental theme allowed people to let their emotions show in ways that would probably not happen in gallery situations. Being on-site a lot of the time, and staying close-by, also gave me much more interaction with audience than normally happens in a gallery exhibtion. Locals told me they would never see that little inlet in quite the same way again, and some returned several times to the site.
The little girl on the lfet was more intrigued by my videoed artist statement than the installation itself, and declared it a ‘very good show’.
Many friends made the journey out to Boreen Point to visit the installation, and made me feel important and special. A day spent in the company of special friends, looking at all the installations, including my own, with them, and having a picnic lunch on John Ince’s verandah, was the highlight of the ten days for me.