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JOEL Joel's Blog

Semi-Annual Salmagundi Club Benefit Auction


Semi-Annual Salmagundi Club Benefit Auction 1
When I write about art, it's usually in the context of an auction or exhibit of expensive stuff bought as much for its appearance as its collectability and investment value. But I have a favor to ask. As a resident artist (photographer) member of the Salmagundi Club I spend a lot of time with working artists who are doing pretty much the same thing artists have been doing for centuries. That is, producing art to hang on somebody's wall because that person likes it. The club itself specializes in realism, and most of the artists are figurative painters. Sometimes figurative artists get to paint landscapes or things that the spirit moves them to capture, but a fair number of them routinely work on commissions of portraits people and pets because people want a portrait to remember somebody by to preserve the moment. I mention this because the Salmugundi club is having their semi-annual benefit auction.

While some of the club members have national reputations and their work is collected, most of the art at the auction is bought for the basic and compelling reason that someone likes it. If you have a choice between displaying a poster or copy of a famous picture in your living room versus something original and unique, many people would opt for the original art. But they simply don't know this is an option. Like all the exhibits at the club, the art in the auction is vetted by a jury. At least in my view, the standard is pretty high. I submitted two photographs and one was accepted for inclusion in the show. It's my first acceptance to a show at the club so I am all excited! The show is currently hanging at the lower level of the clubhouse at 47 Fifth avenue (12th St.) in Manhattan. If you're in the area, I think you'll find it worthwhile. The galleries are open to the public every day from 1 PM-6PM. While there is no pressure to bid, if something catches your eye it would be great for everyone if you put in a bid. Prices are very reasonable because it's a fundraiser.

You can bid on-line anytime but the real value of seeing the pictures in the gallery is you can see the frame and what the picture looks like on the wall. You are also invited to come to the actual auction which is spread over two nights on Thursday, May 23rd and Friday, May 31st. The auction will be a lot of fun even if you are just there to watch.

You can also view and bid on anything online. All the pictures, by the way, are sold or framed and ready for hanging. I know that for a fact, because I'm one of the volunteers who hung the show. And let me tell you after you've pounded a hundred nails into the wall you get good.

Remember as craftspeople, furniture makers and woodworkers, we have an appreciation for the skill and the making of things. Having unique art hanging in your office or home is just as satisfying as having unique furniture that someone made for you being part of your house.

My picture in the show - top row on the left
My picture in the show - top row on the left

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The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.