This has been a long journey for me, one that started last year when I received an email telling me that I was one of six winners of the International Miniprint of Cadaques. I had submitted four prints earlier in the year and in something that felt a bit like a lottery win, I had been chosen, from 750 artists from 56 countries. I was thrilled and very excited. Of course after a while that wore off slightly as I set to work to produce around 30 new prints, plus editions, by April 2015....and of course I had to go to Cadaques. Well, technically I didn't have to go, I could just have sent the work...but that was not a very appealing option. The saving grace is that mini prints are small, just 100 mm square, on a paper size of 180mm square, so I thought it wouldn't take too long (wrong!). But while it was a lot of work, I did manage to finish on time.
Then trip planning became my priority. The time involved in travelling to Europe, from New Zealand, meant that I couldn't just pop over for the opening, I had to stay for a while.
I decided to start in Venice and see the biennale, which was a great experience. Venice was wonderful, not least because I stayed in charming and peaceful Sant Elena, minutes from Giardini and Arsenale, but a world away from the tourist hordes in San Marco. My host was the lovely Veronica Green, another New Zealand artist who lives and works in Venice. I had a wonderful week there and wished I could have stayed longer. There was so much to see I needed a month.
Escaping the heat of a single night in Barcelona, I arrived in Cadaques and settled into my apartment, with the most gorgeous views. I went straight to the beach and swam in the cool salty Mediterranean Sea. Paradise! I found the gallery just minutes away and met mother and daughter team, Merce and Merce, who run Taller Galleria Fort and Miniprint International of Cadaques. There they hold the miniprint show every year, alongside the solo shows of each of the winners from the previous year. When I arrived it was at the end of Irish artist Aidan Flanagan's exhibition. I'd already chatted with Aidan online previously and was happy to see his work in the flesh, though unfortunately missed meeting him. Aidan had bought one of my prints so that was very encouraging. As I write this ( though not as I post it ), it is Friday, the day before my opening. My lovely friend, author Jenny Mortimer (she writes murder mysteries under the more formal Jennifer Leigh Mortimer) will be joining me soon to lend moral support (not to mention a stunning meal at Compartir that warrants a blog post all of its own).