(Writer's Note: This was written back in Dec. 2021, originally on LaxAllStars.com)
This is the LAST post for 2021.
I attended grade school in Manhattan next to the Solomon Guggenheim (where I got busted for wall ball!), across from the National Academy, two blocks from the Cooper Hewitt-Smithsonian, five blocks from the Metropolitan Museum of Art (aka, the ‘Met’) and about half a mile from The Whitney before it moved downtown. There is NO question those museums heavily influenced my decision to be a professional artist and designer, but I did not chase the gallery or museum route due to crowded and cut-throat competition. But I always dreamed of having a piece of art in one, someday, maybe somewhere.
When I went to high school I left the highly diverse city for prep school in rural New England – Connecticut. There were no museums across or next to the school campus, rather farms, trees and rock walls that made up the picturesque landscape. Along with academics and other extracurricular activities, I still made art a prime focus, and a personal identity, and continued to grow my talent. It was working out.
Before my freshman year ended, a local gallery requested a piece for an exhibit with residents in the area, along with students from other neighboring prep schools. The art gallery, a small converted, blue colored barn, located on Route 55 in across the State border in Wingdale, NY was simply called just that – ‘The Art Gallery’. It was no frills and the small exhibition space ironically reminded me of any cramped NYC living area. Regardless, I was excited to have been chosen to represent the school, but mostly to live the dream of having a piece of art up in a gallery someday, somewhere.
25 years since graduating from high school, I still make my way to that part of Connecticut on the weekends with my family. Each time driving on Route 55 coming in from NY to CT, we pass by the old, blue structure that was ‘The Art Gallery’. While it’s not in function anymore, it remains a milestone, a personal accomplishment – a small victory. And that small victory was big enough to keep me going.
Here’s to wishing everyone a lot of small victories in 2022!