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Finding your style

It is common for artists to be told of the importance of developing a consistent and coherent style. Galleries of course like this since it makes marketing so much easier if an artist can be nicely packaged up.

It wouldn’t be too far off the mark to say that pretty much every professional relationship that I had cultivated throughout the 1990s collapsed as a result of what happened to my work in Mayo. When people looked at the paintings, their jaws dropped. It was as if I’d betrayed them. How dare I take another path?

Stuart Shils –

The artist Stuart Shils about the problems he had when his style changed after a visit to Ireland in 1998.

The artist Patrick Heron had similar problems after a change of direction.

[The gallery director] wrote to Heron complaining that he was just beginning to find a market for his still lives and now Patrick had to hit him with this. Most artists have to put up with gallery owners who would like them to stick to the latest selling line…

Patrick Heron by Michael McNay, Tate Publishing

Some other posts on style and the creative impulse.