The initial buzz has indeed increased to a low roar as artists, gallerists, curators and more join the discussion about Art Prize GR. It will be interesting to see this whole event unfold: good, bad or otherwise. Frustration is already growing as artists and venue hosts are realizing that there is a lack of clarity with exactly how this is all going to work! Is the one piece the artist enters simply representative of what the venue can expect or is the one piece the only piece the artist will be allowed to show? Does the artist contact the venue or does the venue contact the artist? How should this be done? Why should this be done? ? ? ? ?
Then there is the enormous issue of the public vote. This alone is a deterrent for a good number of artists. If one works conceptually is it possible for a literalist, conservative public to consider their work? While there is a burgeoning art community in Grand Rapids, I find it hard to believe that the best work will stand a chance-the “prettiest” may end up ruling the day. Is this what they want? Or are they trying to rebel against the artistic establishment and is this really an un-prize?? A way to promote the lowest common denominator in taste??
Another issue arises with the idea of a community vote-what if you aren’t located in a high traffic area? Works that are placed centrally, in high profile locations will have the upper hand in voting just by proximity! OH, and don’t get me started on padding the ballot box with the popularity vote. Know a lot of folks equates with more votes. In this “American Idol” for art is it possible, really, for the most deserving to succeed?
OK, that is all the ranting I will do for now BUT there are some issues with how this is organized. AND… a little bee buzzed in my ear that one of the top painters out there has already dissed Art Prize due to the public vote……
Something to think about!
This being said-I hope they can overcome some of the problems they have created for themselves and pull off a cool event.