My next solo show, in October, seems a long way away, but by now I know better than to get too comfortable with that distance.
It'll be at Austin College (in Sherman, TX). I'm very familiar with the school, as I received my undergraduate degree there, once upon a time--but not nearly as familiar with the Dennis Gallery, part of the Betsy Forster Complex (named after its generous donor), which sprung up a couple of years after I graduated.
My unfamiliarity with the space means that it's hard to know how much work is needed to appropriately fill, but not crowd, it. Having been provided with the space's floorplan certainly helps...
...but only so much. I don't always think spatially, and it's hard for me to really get a sense of the space. So I used a piece of matboard to make a maquette of the gallery.
Half an inch = 2 feet. A little crude, but when I printed out mini-paintings and placed them in the "room," it was believable, in terms of intervals and proportion; and gave me a better idea of how the high ceilings, wide open space, and impressive spans of unbroken white wall, will allow the paintings to breathe.
And okay, I'll admit, it was also a little fun to make. (Regardless of whether you prefer dollhouses or model planes, who doesn't appreciate an interactive miniature?)
I tried out a few different arrangements, moving the paintings from wall to wall and varying the spaces between them--and established to my satisfaction that the number of pieces I'm scheduled to finish by September will be sufficient to fill the room.
Then I thought it might be useful to be able to anticipate how the space would feel with the addition of a few extra guests. Because I am four years old.