This past Friday was special for all of us here in Portsmouth, NH. It marked the first opening of the Seed & Pulp show for Store Gallery at 3S Artspace. Guest curated by my main man, Dylan Haigh – it brought together printmakers from around the world to show off the hand-touched medium. It took us (note: when I use the word “us” I really mean Dylan and the fantastic group of super fine volunteers, board members and partners at 3S – I just did a mediocre job of adding my unwanted opinion here and there) a couple of months of blood, sweat and freak outs to get this off the ground and ready for the First Friday Art walk in town.
To our delight and surprise, people (over 600 of them) really came out in full force to see the new space and the work. We opened at 5pm and had a continuos stream of people walking in and out, purchased prints in hand. I think one of the biggest successes of the night was the fact that people had a chance to really hang. They could walk through and look at everything on the walls and then sit outside and chat about art, Portsmouth, music, 3S, summertime, whatever. I’ve been to a fair share of art openings and my biggest complaint is always the fact that I get all dressed up and when I get there, I walk in and walk out which – all in all, takes only about 15 minutes. It’s often the art that has me bored or the discouraging fact that I can’t actually purchase anything and bring it home. A printmaking show with more accessible prices (most were in the range of $25-$75) solves that problem for sure.
For me, it was a great shift in perspective. Portsmouth is small town on the scale of my own life experience. Seed & Pulp reminded me that even in a small town, you can’t know everything and everyone. You can always learn something from and be inspired by someone new. There were so many cool looking people that I had never seen in town before! So many lucite eye glasses that I wanted! Seed & Pulp gave us all a night to think and talk about really important things like art, community and…corpse paint. Really, at one point I do remember Dylan’s mom telling us that her favorite piece was Caitlin Gallupe’s “Winter Solstice Pizza Party” (see below) and Dylan tried to explain that the face paint wasn’t KISS related. See, everyone got a valuable education. More importantly, they came, they bought, they got excited. That’s really all we could have hoped for.
If you don’t live in New England, don’t worry. What hasn’t already sold out is still available for purchase online at the 3S store.