Somehow, the show directors didn't think any of this would matter to the artists. That expanding a show so it was too big to walk around, with too many artists wouldn't somehow affect the artists who had signed a binding contract to participate in an art show with 300 artists. The last few weeks have created a hell storm of controversy in the art community. Discussions over artists rights, the needs of an art show to make money over the experience of the patron and the artist. It has been exhausting. In the end they were forced to offer refunds to the 300 who wanted them. As of they are scrambling to fill the holes made by these cancellations and still find artists for the extra 150 with only 10 days to go before the show, calling artists who never even applied. It has created bad blood between artists who stayed and those who chose to leave. The show has yet to repay any of the refunds to the artists and we are starting to worry if they will.
So what did we do? We had no presence there, no client base. So we asked for a refund and we will stay home and do our local show that weekend. We got scared frankly. I wish our fellow artists who remained the best of luck but this show should not continue past this Spring show. Their business decisions fly in the face of what it was created for. To provide an environment for people who love art to buy it from people who make art in a comfortable and equitable space.