June 16, 2013
Whether consuming alcoholic beverages encourages people to buy art is an interesting question. I have donated paintings to charity auctions and attended these events. Those who buy the pricy tickets are offered the chance to eat and especially drink as much as they wish before and even during the auction. I think the organizers of these events believe that people who are relaxed and happy will be in the mood to bid and keep bidding. And with the help of a good auctioner, some pieces go for very good prices to benefit the sponsoring charity.
Last weekend I and 25 other artists and, I think, 10 local wineries participated in Winesong in DeSoto, KS. This is a very popular event. All 2,000 tickets had to be purchased ahead of time and the event sold out. The weather was good and the event was wisely planned from 4 to 8 p.m. when temperatures weren’t so high. The rain even held off until the event was over. Ticket holders were allowed a certain number of samples from the participating wineries, who also sold bottles of their product. The artists in their tents hoped that these relaxed and happy people would purchase some of their work. Alas, that seldom happened. While there were long lines in front of the winery displays, many of the patrons pretty much ignored the artists. I sold nothing and two other Lawrence artists I talked to didn’t either.
But I’m not one to give up easily. One result of my being at Winesong is that the Rowe Winery has invited me to have an exhibit at their winery in September and I said yes. Will I return to Winesong next year? I’m not sure. Doing an outdoor tent show is a lot of work, not only for me but for my helpers. However, one of those helpers enjoyed sampling wine and socializing with friends and would like to return next year, so we’ll see.
While I didn’t win any prizes at Stems Plein Air, I did have one painting, “Reverie,” which I mentioned in my last blog, accepted for the Stems show at the Tomahawk Ridge Community Center at 11902 Lowell in Overland Park, KS, which opens this week.