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Thursday, 3 May 2012


 I have been rejected by an exhibition which starts today called "REJECTED" at the A-side B-side Gallery.

I read about it in a post on facebook:


Artists frequently get rejections from shows and competitions; rejection is part of what being an artist is all about. Often an exhibition will have a curatorial concept and the work just simply doesn’t fit the theme, in competitions the judges are subjective and essentially select what they like. Current trends in the art world might make your work more or less desirable not forgetting the provenance of the artist themselves...

The ‘Rejected’ exhibition will be held at A-side B-side Gallery during the first two weeks of May, we are looking for artists to submit one piece of work and a rejection letter or email they have received previously.


The idea of the exhibition is to celebrate rejection, a united force of artists getting together to valiantly disp...lay their work. Will an aesthetic cohesion emerge from the collection of work? How many pieces will be submitted? And how will we hang it?

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: Wednesday 25th April 5pm.

Criteria: 2d work not exceeding 120 x 120 cm.

Please email the following to

1 low-res jpeg.

A list of shows/competitions/art schools you were rejected by.
A copy of one rejection letter (a scan of a letter received in the post or a copy of an email).


Private View: 3rd May (First Thursdays).
Exhibition will run for two weeks, last day Thursday 17th May.

and decided I had to submit something.  however I got caught up in project work, and submitted the following entry on Thu, 26 Apr 2012 13:28:22 +0100

I applied to the Forge 2 competition last year

This is the text I sent them alongside the required photo & scan of rejection letter (above)

" I have been rejected by other competitions, institutions, girlfriends and even my family - however it's all too painful to remember, in fact I seem to have a hollow, black forest of nothingness where any memories about other rejections lie.  Don't make me think about it any more. Please!!!"


So they wrote back with this:

 in other words

So I wrote back:

Oh come on, you can't be serious; your sending me a rejection letter about an exhibition on the theme of rejection letters with a policy of no rejections. Please give me a break, I'm a new artist, struggling with self doubt, and there's gotta be a corner you can put me in.  PLeASe!!!!


I looked up the gallery and decided to ring them after I'd not hear anything more.  After I called and 'explained' that it was ABSURD & RIDICULOUS to reject a submission to an exhibition about rejected artwork, and that they should at least print out a copy of my rejection letter from them and paste it to the front door of the  gallery,  Catherine said she would put up my submission on their facebook timeline - this hasn't happened.

Hi Dot,

Thankyou for calling earlier!  That was a lively debate!

{She actually said I was rude and aggresive, so nice to see that she's utterly sucking up to me now}

I do hope that you won't see this as a rejection anymore, as quite clearly it isn't!  Any submissions after the deadline were not considered purely because they were late, therefore it is not a rejection. 

QUITE CLEARLY IT ISN'T?? If I submitted something for a show, and they refuse to put it up, for whatever reason, I'd say that was REJECTION!! Let's see what the dictionary has to say about rejection: 


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The word "rejection" was first used in 1415.[1] The original meaning was "to throw" or "to throw back".

further google hunt provided this:

Is it just me or do the curators of this exhibition have ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE OF IRONY?

I actually am really pissed off about this, I've spent over an hour composing this post, and spoke to Jane Prosser at my college, who suggested I do make an issue out of it, although she can see that from a Gallery Owner's point of view one has to stick to deadlines, but COME ON!!  I mean less than 4 hours after the deadline (in terms of being in the office)

Catherine also told me that there were only 3 submissions after the deadline, and 40 before, so the administrative complexity of processing 3 late entries would have to be minimal. Say, 30 minutes to print out their emails and find a small space they could go?

Instead of this small effort to accommodate new artists with non-hierarchical brain structures (and possible ADHD!) I've become incredibly upset, agitated & confused.

if you really feel comfortable  with these people's complete lack of a sense of humour, humility or humanity, feel free to check out the details for their exhibition below, or even send them a humerous comment on their twitter account - I'm sure they'll appreciate the attention :)

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