13 people have spent all day arranging and installing our exhibition, over 80 hours of unpaid work, most unlikely to be repaid with any profit when the rent of the space and the other costs and invigilation time and travel are added up. Why do we do this? It's such hard work. I announced I would rather be a writer, just a laptop or a notebook to carry, no tools and lifting and co-operating. By the end of the day I am exhausted.
|Beverley le Levier|
Maybe on past data 2000 people will come and look over the two weeks of the show, most won't even buy a card or make a comment.
The artists enjoy seeing their work on display.
We like to see people looking at it, getting something from it, occasionally someone even tells us they love it or understand it or are amused or moved or they even buy it, showing it’s valued. Someone thinks we are a good artist, they will remember our name.
|Amanda Rae Thompson|
Sometimes I think the pictures are just an excuse for signing our names: Kilroy was an avant garde artist, signing the world.
We're not in the league where large amounts of money are made as investment. It's not the high stakes art market parallel to property speculation.
It's more that we do what we damn well want to express ourselves, we own the means of production and we might make a few quid.
We'd like to be famous, well I would, so that our work would be more seen, known, remembered, make a mark on the culture, join the canon of art. We're as good as the more successful famous ones, we just haven't had the lucky breaks, we didn't know the right people, we failed to marry an art dealer, or the cognoscenti aren't ready for us yet.
Actually when I admire some of my fellow members of Taking Space's art works they are as well done as anyone's, as original, as lively and sincere. Not all of it, I don't even like it all, but I defend its right to be shown.
It's a bit Groucho Marx, by being in this group we trumpet the fact that we are prepared to belong in a group that gives us no kudos but anti-kudos.
But at least we are in a group, we do exhibit, we help one another in a democratic collective of women, we defy all those opportunities to be rejected by selectors we do not respect because all they do is choose what they like and their opinions are no better than ours.
We remember Van Gogh, to whom even a brother in the art racket couldn't ensure success in his life time.
Like that comic who said, 'When I said I was going to be a comedian they laughed' (it was Bob Monkhouse], 'They're not laughing now'.
We indulge our addiction to self expression, to drawing, to playing about with art materials, we imagine our willingness to carry on despite almost complete failure validates our vocation, we stand for something that defies the capitalist requirement for marketing and profit, even though we don’t object to earning enough to pay tax.
Come in, have a look, we can't stop, it grows like toenails, as I believe Picasso said, and we cut it adrift to put it into the world, more clutter, or just a re-arrangement of stuff, creation.
Twenty years of Taking Space and still going on!