Monday, February 1, 2010

Who do you think you are?

(Nicole Eisenman, Commerce Feeds Creativity, 2004)

Just to let you know how it works, in case you don’t already know.

You go into a gallery to inquire about an artist. Because you’re over the age of 35, and you’re asking about a specific artist, you get a look in the eyes from the mean but pretty assistant at the front desk. She goes and gets her higher up, who comes out, her hands in prayer position, at a slight bow, as if she were in front of the Dalai Lama. She thinks you’re a collector.

You say you’re a curator to lend some heft to the situation, but her back straightens nonetheless. It would have only been worse to say that you were an artist. Her next question is: “Who are the other artists in the show?” You drop names. Her eyes shift to your shoulder and remain there for the rest of the conversation.

Some blah-blah ensues. “The process is that you write me an email and I’ll forward it to the artist to see if he’s willing to participate.” OK, will do. But you suspect the email will never get to the artist. You brain rack: who else might you know that would get in touch with this artist? And what about a specific piece, you ask? "Oh, because you have a specific piece in mind!" No, no, she's right, you'll take whatever you can get.

It is all about names and who you know, it’s true.

I may post this over on Donkey Trail, not sure.


Sarah Masarachia said...

Love this post.

Lady Xoc said...

Actually Molly, it's more about who knows you. I second the above comment: "Love this post"

Molly Stevens said...

Thanks so much, ladies.
So, Lady Xoc, if I were to say, "Dakis Joannou know who I am," that would work?

Lady Xoc said...


Aldo the Doorman said...

I can viscerally feel the unpleasantness of your interaction with the gallery matron and her haughty assistant. You should write a first-person short story which opens with you making the inquiries you described in your post, and ends with you burning the gallery to the ground. Yes, I do have anger issues.

Molly Stevens said...

Aldo! I like yout fictionalized version.
How's Hugo? He should move his ass.

Benny said...

Hi Molleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee