Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Think Tank

On March 18, I traveled to Asheville, NC to attend a Think Tank sponsored by the Center for Creativity in Craft. The attendees came from all segments of the craft/art community and the country. Before I left I thought "how can I be doing this when my mind and heart are on survival in this economy?" No, there were no tips on how to "make it" and I was rather immediately disappointed. I live in the world of practicalities and actions. I even surprised myself at how rooted in "today" I had become. As the weekend unfolded, I was able to reach higher (at least a little) and received more than I gave during the many heady sessions. As I flew home, I still questioned why I had been invited and how would I benefit. Present were 3 PhD's, 2 PhD candidates, several university department heads, professors that had distinguished themselves in some way, the head of a large foundation, a critic, a curator from a major museum, a Macarthur recipient, one studio artist and me. Home and immerced in the daily life of owning a gallery, I have been surprised at how many times I have referenced the conference, the times I have considered the discussions in my decision making process and how exhilarated I can be by processing the many side dialogues. I continue to share ideas born in the conference room with others in my community.
I am delighted to have the proceedings still drifting over me in the most unexpected and unintential ways. I have gained from the many people I became friends with and the road expereinces in the magnificent community of NC. It is a lesson in receptity to what is offered, not to expect immediate gratification or gain, and to take the time to actually think and listen to others outside of your narrow band of operation.