At art fairs I get a variety of comments, often unsolicited or simply overheard. There’s quite a smattering of ‘pretty’ or ‘nice’ – those who respect my work but don’t personally care for it; and there are comments from those who do like it. I rarely get someone who actually says something negative. In the context of an art fair, there’s typically just no reason for any of the attendees to specifically state that they dislike anyone’s work. We all know that tastes differ and are not bothered if someone isn’t attracted to our work.
I had a surprise yesterday. Two older ladies (maybe in their 60s or so) came in my booth and looked at my work in some detail. They barely acknowledged me when I went to speak to them and kept looking around. They were speaking in a foreign language and I could barely overhear them anyway. As one exited, she came over to me and wagged her finger at me and said clearly ‘Hate’. As the second lady exited the first one said to her ‘Jawohl’ – I know enough German to know that means ‘Of course’, but wasn’t quick enough off the mark to gather together a sentence to ask her why she hated it before they vanished into the crowd.
Being more surprised than upset, I thought I would tell my neighbor. Before I could go over, another younger woman with two kids (one about 8 one about 5), walked passed and both children pointed into my booth and told their Mom they liked my work.
I guess I’m pleasing the next generation more than this one!