(Pictured Above: students interacting with viewers/pieces during the opening.)

On Friday October 19th, I was able to take part in my first Gallery Show.  I have had work in student shows before, but this was different; it was bigger.  The show put on by my Open Box Project class was in conjunction with a show presented by other professional artists; ‘Beyond Vision: A Tactile Exhibition‘.  I went through the same process for this show as the professionals did: finding something out about myself, making a piece of work that explored that idea, figuring out a way to present my piece and then sharing my thoughts with other viewers during the opening.  It was like getting a backstage look at how a gallery show happens.

I am very happy with my work; a tactile triptych observing the life and death of a dandelion; entitled ‘Dandelion Wishes‘.  During the opening night of the show I was able to see how different people interacted with my work and hear their initial thoughts about the piece.  I had many people come to view and feel my piece and I had some amazing discussions with some great people and artists about my piece and the other works on display.

Also, having a show that is designed specifically for the visually impaired is a challenge for visual artists, like myself, to covey our thoughts and ideas in a way that does not use our visual sense.  My piece was true to my photographic interests, but I added the element of touch by etching the images in my photographs onto the glass in front.  It was so wonderful to be able to speak to the visually impaired who came to support the artists in the show and see how they interpreted the work we created individually, as a class, and as a show overall.  It was such a great opening night, and I would love to take part in something like this again.

The ‘Beyond Vision: A Tactile Exhibition’ will run through November 19 at Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee.  More information is in the link below: