The gift that keeps on giving

MAGIC Carved plate 3.5
MAGIC Carved plate 3.5″ Lilianne Milgrom

I won’t deny that selling my artwork is rewarding, but the real value I get from having my art out there is knowing that it is appreciated and that I have enhanced people’s lives in some way. In the past two weeks, thanks to unsolicited and unexpected feedback, I have been amply reminded of just how much satisfaction and joy this gives me. Art really is that magical gift that keeps on giving.

It began with a recent trip to my gynecologist’s office.  As my doctor breezed into the exam room to perform my annual checkup she told me that she thought of me every day. This sparked a dreaded moment of anxiety – was she referring to  some ominous test results I was unaware of?

gyno office

I need not have worried. She was referring to a hand made ceramic mug I gave her a year ago when I learned that she had completed her yoga instructor’s course. I had totally forgotten about that mug, aptly decorated with an image of a cross-legged woman meditating. It turns out that she drinks her morning joe out of that cup every day.

A few days later I received an email from a woman in Australia who identified herself as the person who had purchased my small, award-winning portrait Le Parisien about five years ago.

5x5in_acrylic_2013 (2)

She took the time to write the following words and, bless her, it made my week:

Dear Lilianne, Just wanted to touch base and let you know I purchased a tiny painting of yours from the Mortimore Prize in 2010. For such a tiny painting it fills the room. It was a Christmas present to my husband after he expressed it was his favourite painting in the show, it was also a stand out to me, we love it! Just wanted to let you know it came to a good home. 

And then, to top it off, I received another email from another total stranger who had come across my contributing artwork in the Women of the Book project currently on exhibit at the Jerusalem Biennale.

womenofthebook illustration (9)

This gentleman really understood what I was trying to capture with my visual expression of the Torah portion Ki Tavo. He wrote:
Dear Lilianne, It looked like simplicity was a prime virtue of the work until I looked more closely and realized the skill and complexity. It really does convey the sense of a deeply willing offering. What excellent work! Would you mind if I used it as a screensaver, reminding myself to be in that place of acceptance and offering?

It’s been a gratifying couple of weeks in the life of this artist – I have also been commissioned to paint a series of portraits for the AARP and just found out that Dreamtime, the work I featured in my last blog, received an award at the opening in NY.

awardIf you have any comments about art that has touched people’s lives or art that you cherish, that inspires you or beautifies your home or simply makes you feel good, I’d love to hear your story.

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Good things come in threes

I REALLY LIKE THIS PAINTINGEvery artist has just about had it up to here listening to people gushing on about how much they like the art, how impressed they are by the technique, the concept, yada, yada, yada. But actually buying the artwork seems to require a step of gargantuan proportions.

The Affordable Art Fair debuted in New York several years ago to entice collectors of average means to put their money where their mouth is. It was so successful that it ironically became increasingly less affordable over the years.

So along comes The Really Affordable Art Show (under $500) organized by the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition (BWAC), known for staging impressive, large-scale exhibitions. Out of 1400 submissions, a mere 150 works were selected for The Really Affordable Art Show, including two of my works, one of which is Dreamtime, below.

reallyaffordable postcard back

Dreamtime Lilianne Milgrom
Dreamtime Lilianne Milgrom

Next up on my exhibition calendar is for those art lovers venturing a bit further afield…Israel, in fact. I am thrilled to be exhibiting in the 2015 JERUSALEM BIENNALE as a participant in the Women of the Book project. This project is the culmination of a labor of love on the part of 54 international Jewish women artists whose interpretations of the 54 portions of the sacred Torah provide a uniquely spiritual experience. Click here for more on Women of the Book.   

women of the book inviteFinally, also exhibiting in October 2015, will be my collaborative work, ENCROACH, a multi-sensory work based on an installation I developed during my 2014 residency at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts together with Argentinian composer, Juan Sebastian Vassallo.

Collage element from ENCROACH installation
Collage element from ENCROACH installation

The installation was inspired by the menacing, invasive Kudzu vine that was swallowing up the native plant species in the natural surrounds of the residency. It seemed like a metaphor for the encroachment of global crises into one’s life. The Visaural exhibition will be on view at the Nave Gallery Annex in Somerville, just outside of Boston. Opens October 9, 2015; 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm.

Watch a brief video of the installation with soundscape by Juan Sebastian Vassallo:

<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/138701866″>encroach brief proposal</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/user1999535″>Lilianne Milgrom</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>