A loss can still be a win

In late January I received a phone call that I had been selected as one of three finalists for an Ohio Arts Council Percent for Art project. The legislation provides funds for the acquisition, commissioning and installation of works of art for new or renovated public buildings with appropriations of more than $4 million. For these projects the law provides that one percent of the total appropriation will be allocated for the acquisition, commissioning and installation of artwork.

I had applied in the fall for this commission to be installed at Northcoast Behavioral Health Campus outside of Cleveland. I had not heard and just thought I had not made the cut, so imagine the excitement when I did get that phone call?

This process was all new to me, first was the site visit to Northcoast to see the facility and get input from the committee. Then 6 weeks later each artist had the opportunity to give a 45-minute presentation to the committee and The Ohio Arts Council representative, Ken Emerick.

I did not receive the commission, however, it was a great experience. Why do I say that if I did not get the commission and did a huge amount of work for the chance to be selected for this project? Well, I made the finalist level of an Ohio Arts Council project, a first for me. I had the opportunity to present to them and make that very important connection as an artist.

I was confident in what I presented from a conceptional standpoint to the actual mosaic samples that I worked on for the presentation. This process pushed me and I actually like that kind of challenge. As an artist, you work in a void on many levels, creating your work and getting it out there to sell and be seen. This process had a much more competitive feel to it. I liked that!

Obviously, this time I did not “win” but in a sense I did, I challenged myself as an artist, I was happy with my work and my presentation and in the long run this experience will be a stepping stone for me. Even a loss, can still be a win.

Congratulations to Susan Danko, a Cleveland painter, who received the commission. Check out her work at http://dankoart.com

This is Susan’s first Percent for Art commission and I am happy for her! Go Susan!

Here are some of the pieces I used in my presentation.

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