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criteria for judging/ countries other than the usa?

updated tue 12 dec 06


Antoinette Badenhorst on mon 11 dec 06

Snail, thanks for your time and effort to respond. This is the kind of
constructive conversation that I was looking for and the kind of thing =
will raise awareness among young artists. I think your points are very =
and that gives me the more reason to advocate a transparent system for
judging. To answer your questions on the $1000 without exposing the =
group or
event.... This was a double judging process for permanent membership. =
application fees were the smallest part of the process.....
Maybe the definitions of shows, exhibitions, jurors (you're =
for the correction) and curators and plenty others should be researched
also. Along with that, it becomes clearer to me by the day that one has =
know and understand the business as well as your market. Just making =
pots is simply not enough.....
I would like to hear from potters in other countries as well. How are =
judging processes there? Are you happy and how would you like to change
things for the better? Ivor, want to stick your nose in here....? How =
you Russel Fouts and where are our Korean and Japanese friends.....?=20
Antoinette Badenhorst
105 Westwood Circle
Saltillo MS, 38866
662 869 1651

-----Original Message-----
From: Clayart [mailto:CLAYART@LSV.CERAMICS.ORG] On Behalf Of Snail Scott
Sent: Monday, December 11, 2006 1:14 PM
Subject: Re: Criteria for judging.

At 08:49 AM 12/11/2006 -0600, Antoinette B wrote:
>[Debby] addressed one of my biggest problems with judging and that is =
>is often times just one judge. I decided that I will never again apply =
>shows, competitions etc. where just one judge is assigned, because that =
>not judging, it is curating (if I can create my own word here) There is =
>huge difference in being a curator for a show and being a judge for a =
>Curators have to be subjective, because they have to assemble a =
>show. Judges have to judge and give score points and be objective. =
>two totally different ball games.

Curating is definitely a word already, and is
a good term for the type of judging that occurs
at many juried shows. The are trying to put
together the best show they can from the work
submitted, NOT necessarily the best works on
an individual basis. That's just how it is,
and I expect it from any worthwhile juried
show. It's not a contest, it's a show entry,
and many external criteria apply.

For most juried gallery exhibitions, they are
looking for work that fits their intended theme
(whether it was clearly described or not).
Sometimes, a theme will develop as the juror
(a more typical term than 'judge' or 'curator')
looks at the submissions, even if none was
specified. The juror wants to create a good
show for the sponsoring gallery - cohesive,
of high quality, and interesting.

A particular entry might be brilliant, but
unsuitable for any of several reasons. It
might be too much like other good work that
was entered, and the juror doesn't want too
much similarity from different artists. So,
one will be accepted and the other rejected,
with almost no difference in merit.

It might also be too unlike the other entries.
The show needs to look like one show, not
like a bunch of stuff shoehorned awkwardly
into the same space together. When "one of
these things is not like the others", then
that thing will be out, however good it might

The submitted work might also be in a style
which the juror just doesn't care for. That
doesn't always mean that jurors will only
seek work like their own (if they are a
working artist). Often, a juror will judge
familiar-looking work more harshly, owing
to their close scrutiny of its subtleties,
and accept less adept but unfamiliar work
mre readily. Or they might prefer work
like their own, either from unconscious
bias or in the belief that the gallery
asked then to jury the show because they
were seeking that very personal slant. You
can't always guess in advance.

Too big, too small; too familiar, too weird;
too red, too blue; too expensive, too cheap;
too offensive, too boring...whatever.

Good work can also be declined because its
virtues are not evident in a photograph.
Details get lost, the unity of the 3-D form
is hidden, the ergonomics of usable objects
are invisible. Photos are a rotten way to
convey dimensional information, but until
inexpensive (and tactile) holography becomes
standard, we're stuck with it.

In my cynical moments, I wonder if I'd be
better off making work with one good angle,
instead of work that needs to be seen in
the round. Given that 100 times more people
will see pictures of my work than will ever
see the work itself, I may not be wrong.
But if I were that sensible, I'd have stuck
with an honest paycheck-bearing career.

It's frustrating to get declined for a show,
but it's the cost of doing business, and like
you, I 'vet' the prospecti to guess where my
best odds lie. Highly focused shows are good,
as there will be less competition. Shows with
clearly stated intentions are also good, as I
can better judge whether my work will suit
them. I also skip shows with high entry fees.
They are seldom 'better', and are clearly
trying to turn their profit on entries, not
sales. Shows with prize money are not always
better, either. The odds are long and the
competition steep, so if the show doesn't fit
my criteria otherwise, prizes won't sway me.


p.s. Just wondering, Antoinette: How did
this one end up costing you $1000?

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