Artist Statement Help

One of the things I’ve done many times over these years is help people with writing an artist statement. It’s such a daunting thing. Who you are as an artist?!? When you struggle considering yourself an artist in the first place? But also don’t know how to separate that self from the rest of who you are? WTF?!!!!!!!!!!

I’m always really calm and commanding when helping someone else with it. This is what you do. Follow these instructions. Answer these questions and we’ll edit the material. Don’t worry, we will get this done. This week I was working on a grant that required an Artist Statement and I was like WTF? How am I supposed to separate that from the rest of who I am? When I struggle considering myself a writer anyway? Who am I? WHAT? So I looked in the sent email and found these questions. Found my calm and commanding self there, and took her advice.

Here are the questions:

  1. What medium (or form) do you work in and why?
  1. What do you love about painting (or writing or drawing or sculpting)?
  1. What is your favorite quote about art (or about life)?
  1. What experiences have led you to making art?
  1. What do you think about when you’re making art?
  1. What do you hope someone gets from looking at your artwork?
  1. What medium or imagery is exciting for you right now?


Write an artist statement. Once I sat down to think about my relationship to craft in this way, it was actually really helpful to think about what I like best about this. My statement isn’t quite done (I also have to write a biography, which is a different set of questions–you’d think a memoirist would have a biography no problem), but I’ll post it when it is.

Tonight I’m reading at Busboys and Poets in Brookland–buy tickets here, and would love to see some friends. The Combat Paper/Warrior Writers family is in town and will be at the open mic too (Eli said he’s not reading, but let’s see…..). Then Friday night is the show, at the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, which is an amazing space. I hope to see lots of new and familiar faces. Much love.

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