I'm delighted to report that the show went well! We had a good turnout -- and that was at 9 o'clock in the morning. I have my students and friends to thank, because many of them made a special effort to be there. A full gallery draws more people, while an empty gallery discourages. I still have about forty-five mugs (guessing), which will now make their way to various other outlets.
I learned a few things:
- Context matters. While I was pricing, $20 or $30 seemed like a crazy price for a mug. It would be, at KRA. In the formal, gallery setting, it seemed more than reasonable. I could get used to that!
- Context part 2: Several of the mugs were wonky: functional but functionally and aesthetically challenging. These I fully expected to still be in possession of at the end of this event. I was proud of myself for not being influenced by what would sell, and making pots true to the original spirit of the project. Surprise! The funky mugs are almost all gone. That would not have happened at a retail store, where people seem to prefer handmade things that almost look mass-produced. My theory is that folks are unconsciously choosing work that they are comfortable with; pieces that look like what they are accustomed to. It can be uncomfortable to have your aesthetic challenged with your morning coffee. It takes a certain kind of person to welcome that. Those people are in greater proportion, apparently, in a gallery than a store.
I haven't really got time to rest and reflect, as I am rolling right into spring and the stores need inventory. I was up late glazing to load today & fire tomorrow. As a result I missed another event I meant to enjoy: The Portland Pottery Teapot show! I hope it went well. I did have a teapot in the show, although it was NFS due to leaking. .jpg">