Partied hearty

>>Partied hearty

No idea who these folks were at the gallery tonight, but when they saw me snapping iPhone photos for the blog, they wanted to be in the shot and say Hi.

Wow. That was fun.

One thing I discovered tonight: People like to pet cast glass. "It's silky. How did you get it like that?" "Four pieces of wet-dry sandpaper and two full-length movies," I replied, and she shook her head.

Leah did her paintings in a town about 100 miles away, and we only met once. We were amazed at how well our work paired. I guess that's a sign of a great curator. This is Wave Vessel, in Bullseye pate de verre.

Just got back from the reception for my first advertised art show, and I had a ball. The work got a pretty positive reception, I loved the way it fit with my gallery partner Leah Wilson’s paintings (so did she) and people couldn’t have been nicer. The folks at Guardino Gallery (and the myriads of friends and family who showed up to support me) made it a wonderful experience.

This piece, Riverflow, probably took the "most petted" award. It's sitting below my favorite Leah Wilson painting in the show.

Riverflow, sitting under my favorite Leah Wilson painting in the show, probably took the award for "most petted sculpture." I used a pre-show shot because people's hands were usually in the way during the reception. The piece, BTW, is about 25 inches long and 5 inches tall, 3 inches thick. It's in Gaffer lead crystal, so it weighs a ton.

I got a kick out of watching how people responded to the work. Most saw it as extremely tactile, which surprised me. I’ve spent most of my life struggling NOT to touch the art in galleries, but tonight’s crowds pretty much petted everything. Obsessively.

If I’d known that, I might have skipped the last 1000-grit sandpapering step and let 300 pairs of hands do it for me…

I found that people reacted more strongly to aquas and purples than blues and greens. They puzzled over the texture–for many, the soft silkiness of a hand-sanded finish didn’t read as “glass.”

And telling them that the pieces concealed faces and figures turned the whole gallery into kind of a giant Where’s Waldo game for awhile.

I’ve also learned a lot about what (not) to do when getting ready for a gallery show, and when I’m not so tired I’ll share it.

Of course, my feet are about to secede from my body, I’m not exactly drowning in gazillion-dollar sales, and nobody ran up in breathless delight to cry, “Ms. Morgan! Ms. Morgan! The Louvre wants this one and the Tate asked me to put a hold on…”

Second-most petted piece, Currents Repose, set off a wave of "find the hidden figures" hunting. You can see four of the nine on this side.

Currents Breaking, just for the record, is 32 bloody pounds of soda-lime (Uro) glass 10x10x18 inches without the base. For me, that's enormous..but I'm learning that, for a gallery, I'm working pretty small. Sigh.

But who cares? That stuff will come–for now I’m proud of the work, thrilled with the way it shows and you can’t beat three hours of constant compliments. 😉

Biggest thank you of all to the myriads of friends and family who showed up tonight and provided moral support. At times I think we outnumbered the visitors, and I absolutely loved it. You were all wonderful.

The show’s up until April 27 and–even if I weren’t in it–I would say it’s well worth the visit. Besides Leah’s paintings, which I love, there are some remarkable resin works by Julia Gardner and wonderful bird paintings by Lori Presthus. They’ve also collaborated on an exquisite line of jewelry. Plus, Lori plays the cello for Portland Baroque Orchestra, one of my favorite bands, so we had a lot to talk about.

Stop in, sign the guest book, and let me know what you think.

Thanks again, folks.



  1. cynthia March 27, 2010 at 9:36 pm - Reply

    Thanks, all. I’m learning to see success in art in stages. The first is feeling good about the work you’ve done. The second is feeling good about the way others perceive it. The third are those little red dots on sold pieces. It would be nice to get to third base, but I’m learning to be happy with first and second, too.

  2. Peter Cummings March 27, 2010 at 12:48 am - Reply

    Well done Cynthia. The work looks wonderful, and a good match with the painter. The gallery has done a great job, and if you feel well with them its a win win, and you deserve to feel exhilerated. Thanks for letting some of us feeling down share the enthusiasm.

  3. barbara March 26, 2010 at 11:10 am - Reply

    Loved the show. Yes… I’m one to pet the glass. L’amour! Place was really crowded. Red dots WILL abound.

  4. Linda Steider March 26, 2010 at 6:50 am - Reply

    Congratulations Cynthia! Looks like a wonderful show & although I couldn’t be there opening night, I’ll sign the guest book later this month.

  5. ellen abbott March 26, 2010 at 6:45 am - Reply

    Congratulations Cynthia. I wish I could see the show. After being discouraged and uninspired and clouted with the bad economy for the last year and a half, I’m finally feeling ready to get back into the studio

  6. Ray Dieno March 26, 2010 at 12:13 am - Reply

    Great success with your writing

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