NEST 4, 9110, textured bird nest with eggs ©Carol Nelson Fine Art









The Colorado Watercolor Society sent me a prospectus for their upcoming show 3/5/2010 - 3/14/2010 in Denver. All media has to be water media on paper. I haven't done anything on paper in several years, but I use acrylic paints all the time and they are considered water media. That's as far as I read the prospectus before jumping in.

I went out a bought one sheet of 300 lb watercolor paper and painted this little textured nest of eggs. I tore the edges of that paper, then mounted it on a piece of burlap, over another piece of paper painted blue-green, and mounted all that on a piece of mat board on which I had put little spatters.

It's a big four layer sandwich. All of this is in a shadow box frame under glass. I think it's a creative presentation for this subject matter. Then I reread the prospectus. Oh no! They won't allow any paintings unless they're matted in "clean, white mats". My burlap and texture, let alone the spatters, are absolutely verboten. They've been in that clean, white mat mode for years. Colored liners or fillets must be no more than a quarter inch.

Maybe I'm a nonconformist at heart. I wish they would create a category for "experimental watermedia" where anything goes, including framing. What do you watercolorists think of these restrictive rules???
For purchase information on this very nonconforming water media painting, please see my website.

17 comments:

SUSAN said...

Carol,

That painting with the eggs looks to me like it doesn't have any mats. It looks like all those layers are part of the art. You should enter it. Screw the mat nazis! Just my opinion. It is VERY cool, like all the rest of your stuff!

Susan

Vern Schwarz said...

This is a winner in my book Carol. Wow, you have got some imagination.

Mary said...

That's stunning!! I agree it all looks like part of the painting. Well done. If you'd read the instructions this wouldn't be, so maybe it's meant to be for some other purpose.

Carol Nelson said...

Mat Nazis - no art for YOU! I love it. Good one, Susan.

Sharon said...

I agree with Susan -if it doesn't cost much to enter it, go ahead. It is wonderful, and I say THEIR LOSS! Maybe you should write a protest letter to the society?

Sheila said...

I want to own a "Carol Nelson" original one of these days. Artists are known for breaking the "rules" aren't they? It's funny when the society that is supposed to foster imagination and creativity squashes that very attribute.

Carol Nelson said...

Very well said, Sheila.

Melody Cleary said...

As a member of a watercolor society, my feeling is this would be rejected if they received it, even if they happen to accept a digital image thinking the burlap was painted on paper. It's a wonderful piece, but his is really a mixed media painting. Only this year is my society accepting aqua board, treated paper and watermedia canvas (framed behind plexi)...things are changing slowly. Collage materials have to be paper, painted by the artist. I guess I see the restrictions as a challenge to me...to get out of my normal mode & try something different.

Carol Nelson said...

Thanks, Melody, for the input. The presentation has some unusual elements (the burlap), but the painting itself is just acrylic paint on paper. I think you are correct that it would be rejected, so I'm not going to enter it.
Re: watermedia canvas. I thought the whole idea here was to eliminate the need for glass and/or plex. That's why I stopped doing any media requiring glass - too heavy and breakable.

Kristeena Crabb said...

I think this piece is quite stunning. The Colorado Watercolor Society doesn't know what they're missing!

Sadia Hussain said...

This is just gorgeous Carol! I love the authentic look! The textures are great .

Katharina said...

I guess they are very conservative in their rules, none the less this is innovative and you used all your creative skills as usual- I love it!

Carolina said...

Oh! cute new photo :)

Carolina said...

Oh, I can't believe those are the rules!
As Mary said, maybe it's meant to be for some other purpose...
And regarding the competition, are you thinking to participate with other piece?

Dean Grey said...

Carol!

The nerve of that Watercolor Society! Having too many rules kills the creativity IMHO.

See, to me, your take on the bird nest painting is pushing the envelope and trying something new.

Why they wouldn't accept that, I'll never know.

I think it's quite clever of you to combine the painting with all the other layers behind it. It create so much more dimension and added interest that way.

Thinkning outside the box should be applauded!

You go, Carol!

-Dean

Paula Cravens said...

Rules are made to be broken. Artists are made to break rules...it's in our job description. I really enjoy the color and energy of your work

Heather said...

I just found your blog today, and I absolutely love your work. This piece is fantastic and so 3 dimensional. You know, rules are too constricting and are meant to be broken. If they didn't accept it, then it would completely be their loss. Anyway, I'm sure there are lots of other places that would only be too willing to accept it. I know I would!