They Appreciate First-Rate Art

2 Oct 2012

I'm so excited to tell you about the opening night for the Contemporary American Realism exhibit at the Beijing World Art Museum. We were all blown away by the scale of the presentation, the press core, the ceremony, and the huge crowd. This has certainly been the experience of a lifetime. I feel so encouraged about the future of realist American painting when I see such a first-rate exhibition and the enthusiastic audience that welcomed it. The Chinese clearly appreciate artwork that is very carefully and patiently created, showing the very best oil painting techniques and creative development. 

A picture says a thousand words, right artists?  So, let me tell the story with photos and captions from the event.

Walking In: Katie O'Hagan, Noha Valenti, me, and Nanette Fluhr dressed in our best for the opening. You know I've got a bottle of champagne!

Walking In: Katie O'Hagan, Noha Valenti, me, and Nanette Fluhr dressed in our best
for the opening. You know I've got a bottle of champagne!

Ready for the Ribbon Cutting: This is what you see when you enter the exhibit. The large billboard has all the American artists' faces greeting the viewer. The ribbons are set for the big ceremony.
Ready for the Ribbon Cutting: This is what you see when you enter the exhibit.
The large billboard has all the American artists' faces greeting the viewer.
The ribbons are set for the big ceremony.

Paparazzi!: Wow--there were a lot of cameras! This was only half of the total press core. We must have posed for a thousand pictures. The Chinese blogosphere was full of news about the show.

Paparazzi!: Wow--there were a lot of cameras! This was only half of the total press core. We must
have posed for a thousand pictures. The Chinese blogosphere was full of news about the show. 

Crowd Control!: Here's the group posing for the press. We are shown with some of the Chinese artists from the Chinese Academy of Oil Painting (more about that later).  The American artists attending the opening are Greg Mortenson, Daniel Sprick, Ron Sherr, Katie O'Hagan, Paul McCormack, Patricia Watwood, Tom Valenti, Nanette Fluhr, Max Ginsberg, Michael Klein, and Joshua LaRock.
Crowd Control!: Here's the group posing for the press. We are shown with some of the Chinese
artists from the Chinese Academy of Oil Painting (more about that later).  The American artists
attending the opening are Greg Mortenson, Daniel Sprick, Ron Sherr, Katie O'Hagan,
Paul McCormack, Patricia Watwood, Tom Valenti, Nanette Fluhr, Max Ginsberg, Michael Klein,
and Joshua LaRock.

A View of the Museum: Look at that gorgeous space! Marble floors and columns, very spacious hanging, great lighting--we are talkin' fancy!
A View of the Museum: Look at that gorgeous space! Marble floors and columns, very spacious
hanging, great lighting--we are talkin' fancy!

LaRock Star!: I have to tell you that Joshua LaRock is the man on fire here. They are crazy about his work and I think he strained his fingers signing autographs.  He is pictured here with our gracious host, the museum director, Ms. Wang Limei.
LaRock Star!: I have to tell you that Joshua LaRock is the man on fire here. They are crazy
about his work and I think he strained his fingers signing autographs.  He is pictured here
with our gracious host, the museum director, Ms. Wang Limei.

LaRock fans: Here's the crowd around Josh's paintings. How great is it to see such appreciation for awesome American fine art oil painting?! What an inspiration.
LaRock fans: Here's the crowd around Josh's paintings. How great is it to see such appreciation
for awesome American fine art oil painting?! What an inspiration.

A Tony Curanaj fan: I'm a huge fan of Tony's work, and so is this museum-goer snapping up-close photos of many favorite pieces.

A Tony Curanaj fan: I'm a huge fan of Tony's work, and so is this museum-goer snapping
up-close photos of many favorite pieces. 

Many thanks!: Here's our host, Ms. Wang, and our ACOPAL Treasurer, Mr. Stephen Ling. Hats off to Stephen for being an indefatigable host, translator, party arranger, and cruise director. By the way, he's also awesome at Karaoke!
Many thanks!: Here's our host, Ms. Wang, and our ACOPAL Treasurer, Mr. Stephen Ling. Hats off
to Stephen for being an indefatigable host, translator, party arranger, and cruise director.
By the way, he's also awesome at Karaoke!

Wonder Wall: Did you notice the background in the last photo? It's a huge billboard showing all the participating artists and studio views. (I couldn't get the whole display in one shot--this is just the center section!)
Wonder Wall: Did you notice the background in the last photo? It's a huge billboard showing
all the participating artists and studio views. (I couldn't get the whole display in one shot--this
is just the center section!)

OMG, Jumbotron!: Yep, that is my painting on a huge video display outside the museum, where they played a slideshow of highlights of the show. My heart skipped a few beats when I saw my oil painting up there.
OMG, Jumbotron!: Yep, that is my painting on a huge video display outside the museum,
where they played a slideshow of highlights of the show. My heart skipped a few beats when
I saw my oil painting up there.

A Gala View: Paul McCormick, Tom Valenti, Greg Mortenson, Michael Klein, and Ron Sherr have a celebratory drink on the terrace at sunset. What a spectacular view.

A Gala View: Paul McCormick, Tom Valenti, Greg Mortenson, Michael Klein, and Ron Sherr
have a celebratory drink on the terrace at sunset. What a spectacular view.

What a thrill this event has been. We have been shown outstanding hospitality, and made friends with the dedicated realist artists and fellow fine art oil painting artists at the Chinese Academy. I think we are all inspired to get back to our studios and work even harder to create truly excellent and meaningful artwork. There is nothing like a good shot of appreciation to make you really want to pull out the stops in your painting. 

Now I will go back to my studio, get back to work, and know that on the other side of the world in China, there are individuals who understand and care about the work I am creating. What an amazing thing. It has made me realize that you just never know who is seeing and appreciating your painting. You may be alone in your studio creating, but if you make the best art you can, then please, please, please have faith that the audience is out there cheering for you--even on the other side of the world.

--Patricia


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Comments

Joan Willies wrote
on 6 Oct 2012 9:07 AM

How does one find out and enter  a show like this??

joan@joanwillies.com

Joan Willies wrote
on 6 Oct 2012 9:10 AM

How does one find out and enter  a show like this??

joan@joanwillies.com

tried to rate five star but it would  not accept  it

Joan Willies wrote
on 6 Oct 2012 9:10 AM

How does one find out and enter  a show like this??

joan@joanwillies.com

tried to rate five star but it would  not accept  it

Trust3d wrote
on 25 Oct 2012 1:12 PM

check out this gorgeous original painting from 1955 cgi.ebay.com/.../140868549162