Friday, April 20, 2007

Metro Blues

I spent the afternoon posing for photographs and doing a succession of interviews, in person and by phone, with TV, radio, and newspaper journalists. In between, I freshened up the cause of all the commotion, adding a couple of 'used' condoms with semen concocted of icing sugar (I couldn't find the corn starch an acquaintance of mine, a well-known American pornstar, recommended). I also went back and forth between the exhibition centre and my hotel to update this blog, answer an unceasing stream of emails (including more enquiries from the press), and grab a little food and rest.
I am so disappointed by Metro 5 Gallery. Apart from some last minute logistical assistance before the event, the management and staff have been very little help at all. They love the press attention and the scores of people queuing to get into my space – almost as much as they love to pretend that it was all due to their efforts. And yet the gallery didn't even bother to come up with an email invitation or a press release to promote my involvement in the event. On the other hand, I sent out an electronic newsletter to 5,000 of my own subscribers. The gallery gave me so little information about the event itself that it was only this morning that I found out, by accident, that tonight, not last night, was the official public opening.
When the censorship shit hit the fan, it was my own studio that responded with a press release to the major media offering my perspective of what happened and liaisoned with the press on my behalf. It distributed the artwork to them to view. The gallery did nothing. Its staff couldn't even get me a cup of coffee or a glass of water as I stood around talking to the press (with a warmth I really didn't feel) about their unstinting support for my work and me. They did refer to me, whenever they got the chance, as "one of the many artists they represent" (actually, I am not).
At the end of this very long but, in many ways, successful day, neither the gallery's owner nor the director thanked me – for my art or for my energetic public relations. Neither of them offered to buy me dinner. Instead, drained, dull with tiredness, I ate with the director and the gallery staff at a nearby Italian restaurant and picked up my own tab. Nobody offered to find me a cab, let alone drive me back to my hotel.
What the hell was I expecting? I am just another of their fucking artists.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes, I also found an incredibly surprising lack of information about Art Melbourne on their (Metro 5) website. Just wanted to say that you Rock! I'm cheering for you. Been checking in regularly for your updates. wish I could see your exhibition! The watercolours you've been posting in your blog are fantastic.

SueC said...

Cheers from the UK too....the watercolours are amazing and I wish I could see the exhibition. Don't let them grind you down.