Art For Art’s Sake   1 comment

 

 

Arts for art’s sake.horizon 1A_NEW

In this case, painting for literature.

Curious? Read on . . .

If we are friends on Facebook or Instagram, you will be aware that I have been painting lately. I’ve been painting postcard-sized water colours which began as a purely abstract exploration of a horizontal line.

I was doing this to help myself get into the headspace of the Canadian/American artist Agnes Martin. While I was performing Morag Northy’s play 17 in Taos, New Mexico late last year, my interest in Agnes’ story was rekindled and I am hoping to write a play about her next year. (She ended her days in Taos and they have a beautiful gallery of her paintings at the Harwood Gallery.) One could say that in creating these postcards of horizontal lines, I have already begun the process.

Since I started posting them, I’ve been asked by a number of people if they are for sale. At first I wasn’t sure, but circumstances have made me think that it would be very helpful to me if I could sell some of them to friends who are supportive of my various artistic endeavours.

Specifically, my little publishing company B House Publications has no money and I am out of copies of my award-winning novel The Piano Teacher. In the past, the costs associated with printing the book were very generously covered by my brother, Tom. Well, Tom passed away last year and no one has stepped up to take his place and help me. A number of people are asking for the book and I have no copies left.

You can see where I’m going with this.

Essentially, I’m looking for help to reprint the novel, and at the same time keep myself afloat until I hear about a grant I applied for this summer (AFA) or until I return to Abes College to teach in August.

So, yes, the cards are for sale. They are original paintings, not prints. They are painted on cold pressed Winsor & Newton paper. I believe that a big part of their charm is that they are small (4” x 6”). Nicely framed, they would add a certain charm to your living space without taking up an entire wall.

I know what you’re wondering: how much? Because of the larger purpose of this sale, to reprint The Piano Teacher, I am hoping that some of my friends who are rather heavily monetized will be prepared to dig deep and be generous. I realize that my fellow artists from any field can’t afford to do that, but I would hate to say no to anyone, so basically I’m going to take it on a case by case basis. It’s a sliding scale, as they say. Make me an offer, and we’ll take it from there.

I donated one card to a silent auction recently and it sold for $200.00. I painted another at Rumble House the other night and it sold for $50.00. A third card was traded for a huge bottle of Belvedere vodka which probably sells for around $100.00. Just to give a rough idea.

Because they are postcards, I am happy to personalize them for you on the back. I’ll even send them through the mail like an ordinary postcard if you like the idea or seeing how the wear and tear of postal delivery would alter the painting. Otherwise, I’ll mail it to you in a protective envelope. Or if you’re in Calgary, we can get together and I’ll give it to you in person. For those of you who have already asked to buy a painting, get in touch with me and we’ll get ‘er done.

As for what they look lie, you can see a good number of them on the left side of the page from my Instagram feed. My idea is to get you one I think you will like from the cards I have created.

So, that’s my plan. If you’re interested, best to send me an email at eugenestickland@gmail.com and we can enter into strenuous negotiations about price and delivery, etc. etc.

Has an author ever before sold paintings to pay for a print run of his or her novel? It’s an interesting question. We may be making history here!

Whether we are or not, it would be very helpful and welcome for me to have some support to get The Piano Teacher back on the shelves and have a little left over to get on with other writing projects this summer.

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Thanks for reading. Thanks in advance to those of you will actually buy one of these little beauties.

One response to “Art For Art’s Sake

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  1. Hi Eugene. We’ve not met but have many mutual friends and I’ve admired your work for some time. I’ve been asked to direct a play for the community theatre in Peterborough, Ontario (Peterborough Theatre Guild) for their summer show in 2020. I’ve been slow for a number of reasons in giving them my choice and now they are panicking because of their brochure deadline. I’ve always loved Midlife and I am hoping you would allow me to direct it for them. I haven’t been able to find out if you have an agent and am wondering if they could contact you here or somewhere else or what they should do? If you were able to give me a ‘verbal agreement’ here to do the play and along with the royalties you require that would be great — as they are pressuring me to have a choice for their brochure. Or if you want to do this through an agent, if you could advise, that would be great. Many thanks — Randy (Randy Read)

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