The month of gratitude: day 26

Day 26

I'm grateful for a little (more) blogging help from Alyson Stanfield, who had an idea that's perfect for the lull before holiday shopping begins in earnest: take an art road trip. 

Credit: Library of Congress

Credit: Library of Congress

I grew up in Oklahoma City. While there is plenty to see and do in OKC, what was really cool was the proximity to numerous art venues in Tulsa, Fort Worth, Dallas, Wichita, Kansas City, and points beyond. (For those of you on the East Coast and abroad who can’t imagine a three-hour-or-longer road trip, you’re missing out.)

There were a number of times I decided an exhibit or event was not to be missed. Among them:

My first opportunity to write for Fiberartsmagazine. My mother and I loaded up the car and road tripped to Arrowmont in eastern Tennessee. We spent Thanksgiving there–next to Dollywood and all of the outlet stores–and took in a wonderful exhibit of contemporary quilts.

The touring production of “Still/Here” by the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company when it made it to Lawrence, KS. This was one of the best experiences of my life.

The Magritte retrospective at the Menil Collection in Houston, TX. WOW! And another chance to see the nearby Rothko Chapel (one of my favorite places on earth).

The Richard Diebenkorn and Sean Scully retrospectives at The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. Later, I returned to see their newly opened building (fabulous!) and was bowled over by the Philip Guston show.

The Gates–Christo and Jean-Claude’s installation in Central Park in 2005. Okay, it wasn’t a road trip, but it was an event that took us to New York.

A road trip I made by myself to evaluate informal family learning at museums and discovery centers in Missouri, Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana. I came upon–quite accidentally–the City Museum in St. Louis, which was so cool. They had an exhibit with a shoe theme that had a shoe theater (instead of puppet theater). I’ll never forget it!

The day I drove from Lake Eufaula in eastern Oklahoma to see the ancient site of Spiro Mounds.

Don’t stay in your comfortable world. Escape! As an artist, you should explore and experience everything the art world has to offer.

Go out of your way to see more art. You never know when you’ll come upon a life-altering or art-altering experience.

Where are you headed?

Alyson B. Stanfield is an art business consultant and author of I'd Rather Be In the Studio: The Artist's No-Excuse Guide to Self-Promotion. She helps artists gain more recognition, organize their businesses, and sell more art at