My show opened on Saturday at the Bolinas Museum in a whirlwind of an afternoon. There are three galleries at the museum. Accompanying my show were two wonderful solo shows by Mike O’Shea and Richard Shaw – each good family friends – the latter has known me longer than I have been taking photographs (before age 14). The crowd was impressive. I don’t know if it was the beautiful weather, the fact that it was Mardi Gras in Bolinas, the live music by Richard’s band in the museum courtyard, or the combined draw of all three artists, but it was packed. Friends and colleagues came out in abundance. I was so touched by everyone’s interest and encouragement. I joked later with my husband afterward that I have never hugged so many people in such a short time except at our wedding. The afternoon felt like a big art party.
I drove home thinking that whoever established the tradition of a reception to open an artist’s exhibit did a good thing. At my first solo show in 1996 in a small gallery in Albuquerque, NM, I might not have agreed with that last statement. Then I did not have the ease with my art I have today, and it was completely excruciating to stand in the same room while people examined the work. But this past Saturday, I enjoyed myself and welcomed the opportunity to talk about process and meaning with friends and strangers alike. Most of all what I valued as I drove home was the sense of celebration that a reception can have. As an artist, I work alone in the studio so much and there is always more work to do – it was nice to take a break, get dressed up on a Saturday afternoon, mingle with friends and art lovers, and drink a glass of wine to the creation of new work.