The adventure continues with the job that fell out of the sky for me last June, and it keeps getting more challenging. After working as a consultant with American Women Artists, managing at first their exhibition schedule and event planning, then taking on membership management at the end of last summer, my role with this national non-profit arts organization increased when I became their executive director this April.
With planning and managing two national exhibits this year, producing a show catalog, working on future exhibit scheduling, membership management, and a myriad of non-profit operational tasks and responsibilities, I am juggling as fast as I can, learning a lot and planning for the future. Already a fairly large membership organization (close to 700 members), AWA has great potential as it expands in its role as a non-profit supporting and promoting the work of women representational artists working today from all across the US and Canada.
In just 5 short weeks, I will head out to Cape Cod for a week to work AWA's 17th Annual Member Show & National Juried Competition Exhibition at the Addison Art Gallery in Orleans, MA, on exhibit from August 15-September 15. I'm excited about reconnecting with AWA members I met at last year's annual show in Texas, meeting many new AWA members, and working with one of my local art connections, as Erin Coe of the Hyde Collection will act as awards juror for AWA's national exhibit. Very exciting, very busy, very rewarding, and I hope to get a little beach time with my family as well, as they're coming along for the ride.
Since I work in a variety of mediums (watercolor, pastel, acrylics, pen & ink, gouache, sometimes oils), I can't claim to be one thing or the other, not solely a watercolor artist or pastel artist or whatever. I call myself a visual artist, just to make things easier in a world that loves labels.
I don't want to paint like anyone else, but sometimes that happens regardless. However, when I work in my looser watercolor style embellished with pen & ink line work, or paint my tiny gouaches, or create a pastel painting with my slant stroke technique, I feel like I am painting in my own voice. I feel these are more my trademark pieces.
My newest work, Broken Falls, is an example of the loose watercolor with pen & ink line work I truly enjoy painting. It is one of several new pieces going into my solo show at North Country Art Center's City Hall Gallery in Glens Falls, NY this September.
A wonderful and exciting opportunity presented itself in the form of a new position managing American Women Artists, a national arts organization "dedicated to the inspiration, celebration, and encouragement of Women in the Arts". With a mission statement like that, it was certainly an opportunity I could never refuse.
One of the best parts is that I share the fun with my friend Anne Smoczynski, my former co-worker from LARAC. She handles the membership and business communications and I handle the exhibits, social media & marketing; together we will work on development of the organization.
It's an honor to be in the position of promoting the work of the women artists who are members of AWA; the high caliber of work and tremendous talent of the artists represented in AWA's membership are truly impressive and inspiring. Visit www.americanwomenartists.org to see what I mean.