The Sketchbook Project is just fantastic. (check out their website here)
It is "a global, crowd-sourced art project and interactive, traveling exhibition of handmade books." It was set up by two art-school graduates who were somewhat overwhelmed by the art 'world' and didn't know how to get into a gallery. They envisioned a new more artistic environment where anyone could exhibit work without some complicated process. Everyone and anyone is invited to get involved and send them a sketchbook or just to go and visit their travelling Sketchbook Library, which moves around North America.
For a $25 fee, you are sent a notebook and asked to fill it up. And from there, it's all up to the artists.
I think I've talked about being on the committee for my university's Visual Arts society before. At the start of the year, we were discussing this project and wanted to bring some of its essence to Dublin. Over the last few months we gathered sketchbooks from artists, casual scribblers and ordinary college students from all over Ireland and on Thursday the 28th we hosted an exhibition of these original and intensely personal visual diaries. We wanted to remind people that anyone and everyone is able to participate in art and get creative!
(above images from my own sketchbook)
It was such a beautiful representation of different styles, people and inspiration.
Some of our participants tracked their adventures, dreams, ideas, poetry, thoughts, paintings, sketches and scribbles and together we all created an eclectic collection of fluid and unique pieces of art. And it was OH SO interesting, and OH SO amazing!
I had forgotten how much I loved to just doodle and collage and create something for no reason. And I'm going to start adding to my sketchbook more from now on - so look out for more posts about that.
What was best about the project was how simple it was. We held it in a no-charge community space, gave out ice cream coke floats and laid the books out on tables. Simple. But wonderful. The response was so great and everyone was so lovely. I really want to do something again. Perhaps in a few months, or a year. We shall see.
If you want to see more images from our exhibition check out the hashtag #thesketchbookprojectdublin on instagram!
Talk soon. I'm off to do an essay and cry about it.