Joan Rankin - Emma Lake Experience

Well I got a letter from Ken Lochhead suggesting that I should come to Emma Lake even though I wasn’t a practising artist at the time, but I should come up as an art educator to see what was happening at Emma Lake.  And this particular year they had invited Clement Greenberg as the guest artist from New York.  So I went along with some big pieces of masonite, and my little box of oil paints and my little brushes, and I hadn’t any idea of what to do when I got there.  But Clement Greenberg gave lectures continually, all day long, everyday and all evening too mostly.  It was more than I could take in.  My head was just bursting with trying to absorb all this new information about what was happening in art today.  And he was talking to me…he came and sat down with me and my work, and he said, oh you’ve got to get pigment in the background, you’ve got to get…I didn’t have a clue what he was talking about.  But he said, you’ve got to take yourself seriously.  If you want to be an artist, that’s what you have to do, otherwise you’re a Sunday painter.  So it was something I took home with me and I thought about it a lot.  Because after that two weeks there, I felt quite differently about art and making art, and I felt that I wanted to find out what I could say.  I hadn’t a clue what I could say.

Duration: 2:04 min
Size: 9278kb

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