Its a while since Iâ€™ve been to a Erotic Guild of Artists Event day, so I was pleasantly surprised to find there had been a tidy up since my last visit, and we had a much improved car park this time, with more spaces for everyone nearer to the studios.
I had arrived early to take my ten drawings for the contemporary/erotic art auction, and was pleased to see there was a lot of art there for people to have the chance to buy. But first a warming cup of tea and a bacon buttie was needed for sustenance, since it was such a cold winters day.
Various people were arriving then, with cheery greetings and hugs and kisses for their friends, as they chatted. I had a nice chat with a photographer who I had not seen since Erotica in November, and asked him what he thought of it, since both he and I had exhibited there for the first time, so we compared notes of our experiences . Then another artist and his girlfriend arrived and I was able to ask them the same question, as his stand and my stand had been close to each others on the gallery at Erotica, and I was able to ask his girlfriend what she thought of it. She and I had a lovely chat about various things as we huddled around one of the heaters for warmth on this bitterly cold day.
One of the body sculptors introduced me to his lovely wife , and I enjoyed having a chat with her as again, Iâ€™d met her briefly at Erotica but not really had time to talk much to her then, as we were all working so hard at the show.
By now, more people had arrived, and were taking the opportunity of getting a bite to eat and a hot drink, before the auction started at 2pm. The three founder members were busy sorting out the artwork for the auction, with various quips to the gathering crowd. One of them called over at one point that heâ€™d start the auction early with anyone who wanted one of his paintings as he held it aloft for the price of a cup of tea â€“ and someone answered very quickly that theyâ€™d have it â€“ and so got the first bargain of the day!
Just before the auction started I had a nice chat with an attractive brunette and her chap who always are very smiley pleasant company, and again Iâ€™d not seen them since Erotica, so had another catch-up chat with them about what they had been up to recently.
Then it was 2pm and the Guild secretary started the auction, as everyone gathered around on the assembled chairs or stood at the back and the sides of the studio and he did a truly valiant effort, trying to get the best possible price for the items, so that each artist (and the Guildâ€™s commission) could get the most they could for them. Anyone who wanted to bid had been issued with a number, so that they could register their bid. The secretary gave the details of the artwork as he was fed each piece, and then the artwork was moved to the â€œsoldâ€ pile or the â€œnot soldâ€ pile. There were certainly some wonderful bargains to be had, with some lovely artwork being sold at very reasonable prices, including a some gorgeous plaster casts of boobs and fannies, and some wonderful paintings although I know that some of the lower bids for some of the other artwork were for the frame and not necessarily the picture inside it. One thing that amused me as the auction progressed was the thumb of one of the artists who was helping to hold up the artwork for the buyers to see. He had cut it quite badly a few weeks ago, and since then the horror story of whatever is under the large white bandage has been graphically described by anyone who asks him the state of it (I know this, because I did!). He is able to manage quite well, and was perfectly able to lift up paintings for the bidders to see clearly. But I noticed that the thumb in its resplendent white bandage was gyrating everytime, even though his other digits were still, giving it a very active life of its own!
The auction went on all afternoon, for almost four hours with only a short 15 minute break in the middle. So much artwork to be gone through, including my own drawings, that unfortunately didnâ€™t sell, but I think that was because mine, and some of the others had (very reasonable) reserve prices on them and people were looking for mostly cheap bargains. The artwork that didnâ€™t have any reserve prices certainly sold well. Some of it at ridiculously low prices. I wasn’t going to let my art go at such low prices, because I value it higher than that, and hope that others do too. But it was certainly exciting watching two or three people bid for some of the paintings, with a flurry of nods going on until the price was accepted.
Whilst all of this was progressing I had a chat with a couple of visitors who I’ve chatted with before, who liked quite a lot of the erotic art but didnâ€™t have a place in their house to hang it, unfortunately. One particular couple did buy a lot of the art though, and I wondered if they had a particularly large house they were filling with all their purchases! Or more likely, an outlet to sell them, I wondered if they ran an art gallery somewhere and were going to sell them on at a greatly inflated price.
During all of this the resident videoer was capturing the proceedings for the next Guild DVD, and the stills photographer was taking photos as he always does, although I think he was outside photographing the gorgeous red-head in her rather splendid outfit that seemed to be mostly a pale pink pair of PVC thigh length boots, whilst she balanced high up a ladder placed against the outside wall, when the secretary inadvertently made a wonderful gaff that caused a titter amongst the audience. He was holding each painting up, and then reading the details out of the subject â€“ but he hadnâ€™t realised, until he looked after realising the gentle laughter was aimed his way, that one painting was of life size naked male torso so as he held it infront of him, he’d got the hunky body heâ€™s always wanted! LOL
The auction went on until almost 6pm, as there was so much to show everyone. The guys worked really hard to get as much money that they could for the items â€“ even including the green boiler suits that they were wearing, that had been signed on the back by Trinny and Susannah from the â€œGreat British Bodyâ€ TV show of last year. But unfortunately, no takers! At the end of the session, there were a lot of people queuing up to pay for and collect their bargains â€“ so a good day for the Guild and for everyone who bought and sold on the day. Iâ€™m sure there will be another one at some later date, as it certainly seemed very popular.
Time to go â€“ as people drifted out into the night, and time for everyone to say goodbye with hugs and kisses. I always enjoy my time there, as everyone is friendly, and happy to chat.