As a friend once said to me, “Looks like I’m somewhere I don’t like being–out of the loop!”
Though I’ve known Lyndsay McCandless’ gallery might close, it wasn’t confirmed for me until I checked out Henry Sweets’ article in today’s Planet Jackson Hole. (Nice new format, Planet! I didn’t recognize you.)
As Henry points out, Lyndsay’s First Fridays are Jackson’s own “first” tradition; having a “first” day of the month art celebration is becoming a popular venue around arts-oriented communities. Selfish me. When Lynsday began her First Fridays, I talked to her about her vision. I told her to keep what was hers, to own her great concept for community art happenings, that it was hers and she should be clear and proud about it.
Imitation might not be the most sincere form of flattery, but it is certainly flattery. Now, First Fridays are a Jackson phenom. In Jackson, we’re all competing for limited turf, in a variety of venues. There are posers, there are the real deals. Ironically, with so many galleries jumping on the First Friday bus, crowds are sometimes a bit diluted.
Openings are wonderful; they’re not the best venue for thoughtful perusal of art. So my request to all of you who attend these parties is, please go back and spend time in your favorite galleries REALLY LOOKING at the art. Think about what you are viewing. Write something about it, even if just for yourself.
Developers: Do something to save Jackson’s arts. You need them. The arts have powerful marketing value for you and to ignore them, to pay lip service only, isn’t enough. It’s also not very smart, very current, or very prescient.
Lyndsay, you are a town treasure. That’s why I nominated you for last year’s Award for Creativity, and that’s why you won, baby. You are not a poser. You are the real deal, an original, and you are all heart. See you soon.