Monday, August 14, 2006

What happens to the other 7,000 paintings?

Each year approximately 8,000 submissions to the Royal Academy Summer exhibition are reduced initially to 2,000 "doubtful" works. They are then reduced again to around 1,200 - of which 1,000 are hung.

So what happens to the other 7,000? Many artists take their work straight round to the Llewellyn Alexander Gallery to try for inclusion in the "Not the Royal Academy" Show which aims to show the best of the work that was submitted to the Royal Academy but not hung. The Gallery was inspired to start this annual show, run at the same time as the Summer Exhibition, by the original "Salon des Refus├ęs" in Paris in the nineteenth century.Each year hundreds of artists bring their work to the Gallery and are told straight away whether their painting has been accepted or not. Oils, watercolours, mixed media and pastels of all shapes and sizes pass through the doors of this lively Gallery which is situated on the South Bank adjacent to Waterloo Station and opposite the Old Vic Theatre. Every picture is for sale and the gallery is completely rehung with new work every three weeks during the period of the exhibition.

I was at the Gallery on Saturday submitting work for another exhibition (of which more shortly) and while waiting commented that some of the work I saw on the walls was, in my opinion, better than some of the work that I had seen in the Summer Exhibition. I gather that comment has been made by more than a few people! Hence why I decided to devote a blog post to highlighting the fact that this exhibition - and the Summer Exhibition - are now in their last two weeks.

The Gallery is open from 10.00am to 7.00pm Monday to Saturday and there is no entry fee. Go and see for yourself and make your own mind up....

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  1. Isn't that a great idea? It takes the sting out of rejection in not making the Summer Exhibition.

  2. Sounds like a great idea, also I often think that public are far better art critics than the art establishment.


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