It’s crazy how time disappears- I feel like I don’t even remember doing anything other than things for the show for the past 2 months. I don’t remember eating, sleeping, or having time off. On the surface, it’d be easy to think, “Yeah, I just need to show up, put my stuff in the gallery, then I’m ready”. And I suppose for a few people on the MA that was the case, but for the rest of us, there was a ton to do to get the show ready: making the catalogue, advertising, organising the layout of the gallery, getting gifts for everyone who had helped us in the year….
It’s finally over now, though. Even though the show went up on 11th September, there still ended up being so many things that needed to be done while the show ran: watching the gallery, keeping the displays looking nice, showing people around the show, clearing out the studio, etc. We finally took the show down and cleared out the gallery on the 22nd and yesterday I enjoyed my first actual day off in ages. I celebrated by clearing out my email inbox and cleaning my room. I’ve always found that when I get really busy with projects my personal life ends up getting into a state of utter disarray. My room has never been super-tidy, but it’s been an “absolute tip” [a wonderfully British way of describing a messy room!] lately. I’ve got no plans for this next week- I’ve had months to look forward to having a bit of time to get my life in order, and that’s what I’ll finally be doing! Answering a year’s worth of emails (I’ve managed to get my inbox from 1500 emails to under 500), organising my kitchen, and cleaning my room are high on the list.
When a huge project has just finished, I think it can be extremely helpful to take a mental vacation from anything related to work for a bit. Sadly I’ve been unable to manage that yet. I’m relieved that the MA is over because there are so many ideas I want to try out that I wasn’t able to while I was constrained to doing everything in a strict academic mindset. I’ve already got a new sketchbook filled with new ideas and things I want to try out. So what happens next? The Birmingham City Council sponsors a programme called Design Space, which offers free studio space and business classes for artists who will commit to doing 30 hours a week of self-employed work in their chosen discipline. I applied for Design Space over the summer and got in- that starts on the 1st of October, so I’m really looking forward to that. Before I knew about Design Space I had already planned to devote at least 30 hours a week to my jewellery work anyway- I made so much progress during this past year and it would be a massive waste of my £10,000 tuition to just walk away and not do anything else with it!
I’ve got a few shows coming up in the next year and have applied for a few more: I’ll let you know about those as they come up. I haven’t posted my whole MA collection on here yet- i’ve posted photos of pieces as I’ve finished them, but not all the pieces I made for the show have been posted on this blog yet. If you’d like to see the full collection, take a look at www.miriamrowe.com . I’ve given my website (and this blog!) a much-needed makeover: feel free to let me know what you think! I’m always happy to have comments and suggestions, especially for anything web-based, as I’m a self-taught amateur.
I’ll leave you with a few pictures from the show: opening night was so much fun and it was great to see so many friends there! Thanks to all who came (especially my mom, who flew over from the USA to surprise me!)
Well that’s all for now- please do check out the whole final collection if you get a chance (www.miriamrowe.com). I’ll write again at the beginning of October when I start Design Space: until then, I’ll be cleaning my room.