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words from a juror

updated mon 10 sep 01


clennell on sun 9 sep 01

RR, Captain Crawdad, Dad wrote:

> I find myself in agreement with Tony here.
> My attitude - from the beginning - has been - I'm gonna make em so good
> they will not be able to throw em out.
> Not that I have never been thrown out but I've done better than just get in
> as well.
> I have been a juror many times - on many levels - I take the job seriously
> and insist on giving my "design" lecture to anyone interested. I also do
> comments and insist the charge to the Juror be published with the call to
> enter.

RR: You probably don't remember this with your advancing age, but i phoned
you almost 20 years ago for advice. I had submitted a proposal for an
Ontario Arts council grant. I was rejected. I knew you had been a juror and
phoned to ask what I had done wrong and how I could improve my proposal.
You helped me with wording- the same plan but change the wording. I had used
the word "tradition" often and you told me to use words like wood firing for
new innovative work. Emphasis on new and not old blah, blah, blah. You knew
I had to play the name game. Next year I applied for $4000, same plan, new
words. got a cheque for $4000 with an attached one dollar bill and a note
from the jury saying they could only give me what I had asked for, but they
wanted to give more. the one dollar bill was their way of telling me this
was a great proposal. I have received 5 Ontario Arts Council grants since. I
have been rejected at least as many times.
I don't hang these "blue ribbons" in my office. I store them away in my
mind as some sort of "nod" from well respected craftspeople to keep doin'
what you're doin'.
When I have been asked to jury I always repeat this to myself before leaving
home in the morning-"Look longest at the ones you dislike."
The ones you love are sometimes instant, the ones that are lukewarm are just
that- lukewarm, not hot, the ones you dislike maybe there is something in
there you had better look again at.
To be a juror is to be a teacher. Got to have a creative mind, not one that
is shut down. You never know what your words will mean in someones career.

thanks to all the great jurors out there and the rest of them can go to