Artist Demotivation: You think your idea is new? Artists have been doing that for centuries and you labeled it craft.
Entrepreneurial Motivation: There are no new ideas just new versions of the same old ideas. Think about how Germans love insurance and find a new way to offer insurance and tap into the German’s need for security.
Duplication. Insurance allows a person to replace something that was lost or make sure they don’t lose something they already have. Insurance offers a sense of security.
There is no security for artists and no insurance that guarantees that an art piece you are creating will turn out the way you want or when it is created that anyone will want to buy it.
Today lets play with the idea of security by taking an idea and creating it twice. Artists throughout history have done this, taking an idea and replicating it over and over again. If you are not sure how, you can do this using an overhead projector, a light box or like famous artists from the past, a camera obscura.
Artist Demotivational: Germans believe that you can walk everywhere no matter what the distance and this mentality extends to buying art. They want to see if you can walk the distance so stop whinging that they don’t buy your art, strap on your sturdy practical walking shoes and show them that you can trek with the best of them and make the distance.
Entrepreneurial motivation: Germans are practical, methodical and willing to sacrifice a bit of comfort for their health. How about creating a better pair of walking shoes with replaceable soles that don’t look like ugly old lady shoes. Germans will buy walking shoes because they have lots of places within walking distance.
I once asked a German what would be the German translation of walking distance and they told me that Germans do not have that phrase because everything is within walking distance. Today, go outside and walk in a different direction and see if you find some new composition or motivation to create a piece of artwork. Share with me how it makes you feel to go in a different direction. I walked in a different direction today and found a fountain of rust. Here you go. My treat.
Artist Demotivator: Germany is not the Land of Oz, it is the land of Goethe. Germans love to see foreign art and discuss and analyse foreign cultures but they want to be surrounded by artwork that resonates with their personal tastes. In Munich, your work will be evaluated by Germans who are conservative with their money and their tastes. Buck up and show them you have artistic value otherwise you will have a full studio and an empty bank account.
Entrepreneurial Motivation: Germans love to tell you how to do things right. Listen to them except when it comes to cooking ethnic food or being creative and spontaneous.
Munich Artists carry a bit of their homeland within them (German or Austlaender) and sometimes this homeland overshadows the artwork. Without being told, a Munich art collector/viewer will look at an art piece and say…”oh,he is French or ah,she is American.”
The artist’s ethnic background has oozed out of their artwork and waved a national/regional flag. If you are one of these artists who is very “French,American, African, Asian,” embrace your cultural identity and share with me a “Taste from Home” on Facebook.
Artist Demotivation: When the German door of opportunity opens, you better shove your foot in or find yourself locked out and wishing for a universal key.
Entrepreneur Motivation: When a German door opens, feel welcomed. Germans don’t open their doors to strangers, door to door salesmen or even some of their friends.
Create a Universal Key
I’ve locked myself out of my German house twice. The German door system automatically locks you out your house if you don’t have your key You can’t turn or push the handle down to open the door, you must have the key in the lock for the door to open. My daily routine is to ask myself if I have a key so that I can get back into my house, gallery space or art studio.
“Do you have your key?”
Artists never ask themselves if they have the key to open the door of opportunity. In Germany, artists need the right key (CV) to open a traditional career in the arts. Artists who do not have the right key (CV) must find another way of opening the door to opportunity. What is that other way? That depends on the artist and that isn’t the focus on my challenge. The focus of the challenge is to give artists a visual motivator in the form of a universal key.
For day 5, please make a universal key that will unlock all the doors to all the opportunities in the German universe. This key should be available to you at all times so that when a door (opportunity) is in front of you, you can pat your pocket/purse/iphone and say, “yes I have the key.”
PS In Germany, if the door is shut, so is the window. The phrase, “When God shuts a door he opens a window,” does not apply in Germany. Windows are only opened for specific reasons and only if there is no chance of a draft which may make them sick.
Aritst Demotivation: Germans treat their napkins like hidden treasures. What makes you think they want an art piece made from one?
Entrepreneur motivation: Go! Fill that market niche with a treasure for consumers to find. (Even if it is a recycled idea.. spin it and maybe they won’t notice.)
During my childhood, napkins were piled up on every American countertop inviting you to take a handful, but in Germany napkins are allocated on a need by need basis. You will be lucky to have one napkin per person at a table or available on the countertop. If a napkin is incapable of handling the job created by your dripping ice cream cone or sloppy sandwich filled to the brim, you will be hard pressed to find another one. You, my friend, will be hunting down one of Germany’s hidden treasures.
For today’s creative moment, take a napkin/paper towel from the vaults and create a piece of art with it. Germans will not want to buy it because it is a used napkin, not archival Hahnemuehle paper and you are not an art academy graduate with permission to make crap. With this valuable knowledge, feel free to cut the napkin up with scissors or doodle and dribble ink on it. A napkin is made to be thrown away so don’t be afraid to experiment with this fragile piece of paper and do something wild. When you are done, take a photograph of your creation and then dispose of the napkin in the nearest empty hole and share the photo with us on Facebook.
In our art studio, the artists go through paper towels at an alarming rate. Is it a normal American rate (three out of the five artists are American)? Or, has my German blood taken over and declared that napkins are not disposable? Maybe I just work in the Bermuda triangle for paper towels and napkins. Does the process of creating art require more than one paper towel per painting? These questions are posed to the universe, not you. Because of spammers, readers are not allowed to respond or comment to anything on this blog. You can respond to the questions in your head, on Facebook or to my face. (My face = Emmy Horstkamp and I currently live in Munich, Germany but I will be in London for an art fair March 27-29th.)
Having problems being creative on a daily basis? Join us for the lent challenge and focus on your relationship to art and creativity. If you have no relationship to art, you can take this lent challenge as an opportunity to change direction and follow a more creative path.
Just like with our other art challenges, there are no rules for the lent challenge. You can spend lent creating art pieces, sharing images of other people’s art or just contemplating my motivational/de-motivational comments before going on with the rest of your day.
Today is Day 1 and here is the link to the Munich Artists Lent Challenge. If you don’t want to click the link that is ok. The topic for day 1 is stickers. Photograph them, create one, buy one, paste one on a sign post, give one to a friend. Just incorporate a sticker into your day in some way.
Maybe, even find a sticker album and start collecting stickers. Stickers are an easy and low cost way to add some art to your life. Sticker books are a useful place to keep them. (Maybe one without a unicorn…)