And well that was that, we did it all again while we wait for the new normal to settle down and reveal itself properly…


And well that was that, we did it all again while we wait for the new normal to settle down and reveal itself properly, a fourth Cultivate on-line art exhibition for 2020, the So Why Not Do It Again? show went “live” or whatever the term is, last night at 8pm, a carefully curated rather diverse exercise in cross-pollination, 43 artists, 260 pieces of work. The show opened last night, hosted on the Organ website, there were over 10,000 views in the first two hours, by this morning the number of views had doubled to over 20,000, the numbers have slowed right down now but hey, that’s a lot of eyes on the show. The exhibition will just stay there now, there to be viewed when ever people wish to, indeed all ten Cultivate on-line shows are still there (we put up the first, a show called Red, back in 2017). So Why Not Do it Again features 43 artists, some names familiar to Cultivate regulars, some familiar London artists who have figured in many of our shows, alongside artists new to us, invited artists from North Wales, from Scotland, from Russia, Canada, Yorkshire, Kent, Manchester, Leeds, all there and hopefully all the artists engaging and sharing and people finding new people to get excited about, interested in. It does feel a little strange this morning though, lots and lots (and lots of work selecting the art and putting it all together, preparing the images, working all day on the “hang”, getting the show to run in an acceptable pleasing order that flows and the rest, it feels like far more work than curating and hanging a physical show actually. And that’s the thing, you work on it for days and days, non-stop staring at a computer screen and endless bouts of e,mail tennis, there focussed for days and days and then finally you hit the publish button from the silence of your own studio and there it is, done, done with, over, not that slightly drunken glow you get at the end of an opening night at a physical show you’ve put up, not that buzz or that sound of that hum you get with an opening night, yes, you can see the stats but you don’t get the interaction, the conversation, the coming together, the response, you’re not excited about getting back to the gallery to open on the day after the opening for the first proper day and the first visitors, you’re not looking at other people’s photos from the opening night on your social media feed, you don’t get people coming in to talk about the show or to ask about the art or the artists, all that work and half way through the next morning it all feels like last night’s chip paper or at least yesterday’s tired old news – on-line attention spans exhausted, that was that. what next? Sure, the exhibition is great, I’m happy to say so myself, we worked hard on it, we’re rather pleased with it once more, all four of this year’s on-line shows have been damn good, yes we can congratulate ourselves and feel good about how we’ve spent some of our lockdown time, but no, it doesn’t satisfy, it won’t do, miss proper art exhibitions, I miss putting them on, I miss paintings hanging on proper walls, I miss herding awkward arists, I miss it all. Yes, So Why Not Do It Again? is a damn good art exhibition, there’s some exciting engaging art, 43 rather diverse artists, lots of good things to see, and yes it will stay there on line to be viewed if and when you want to, I hope you do, but hey, in all honesty, what an anti-climax the morning after the night before is… (sw)

So Why Not Do It Again can be viewed in full via this link (including this piece from Peter A Leigh)


Peter A Leigh

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