Words and works of Contemporary Artist Keith M Ramsey

The Residue of a Show’s Lost Opportunity….

First I’d like to start by saying Diluted Loss is one of the proudest achievements of my life when it comes to my art, so it’s probably normal that I feel the profound heartbreak I felt on Wednesday June, 1st when I took it down, probably for the last time in Richmond,VA.

I don’t mistake that feeling as some anti-euphoric depression that its going be put back in the studio and stored away till next time a show falls my way.

The real depression creeping into my mood comes from the fact that this is the first year that I can remember since 2004 that it was showing on Memorial Day. Unfortunately, the Richmond Public Library was closed on that Monday. As well it should have been, being a national holiday, I can understand that.

But the fact is, for the entire day, and even now while I’m writing this, I feel like Diluted Loss missed a great opportunity to be relevant on a day or event that was much larger in scope and the point of the series has once again been lost in the wind due to my shortsightedness. Maybe not that, but for some reason or another I feel like this series has a lot to say and it once again missed a chance to be heard.

Damn, left out once again.

Realistically I know the show was under cut by the library being off the beating path Richmond’s monthly art event the First Fridays Art Walk promoted by Curated Culture, and most of the gallery activity is two blocks away on Broad Street.

Another thing that hampered the exposure of DL to the public was the show didn’t have the media coverage it should have had. It didn’t show up on the public radio arts calendar for the day, although it did get a off-the-cuff shout out from Ana Edwards on the Defenders Live program on WRIR, which was pleasantly unexpected.

Because of the subject being about black soldiers, racism and WWII, I thought I would surely get support from Richmond’s leading African-American weekly newspaper. Although, I could easily have provided them with photos and copy, they claimed to  have no one to cover it because of budget cuts and suggested I buy advertisement.

Unless I was Picasso at VMFA, Diluted Loss would get no support from the paper. Awesome….

Maybe they thought I was selling the show, but clearly I’m not and the subject matter was about black history, and its goal is to educate the public about racism and the issues black soldiers had to face during the “great war”….. but to no avail.

The conversation came to a swift end.

It wasn’t a total loss. During its run some friends took their own time to go and view the show and had an inspiring response to the art. A few collectors were there on opening night to see the new work and lend support. With its 4 new pieces, the show was clearly at it’s best! I heard good things from individuals who have seen the show and hopefully some people walking thru the marble hall that served as the gallery for the show, stopped to take a look at the work, showed their kids and had discussions about the subject of race, America and war.

Diluted Loss ready for a museum presentation outside of the boundaries of Richmond, VA, there’s no question about it. I’m aiming for next year in the Washington DC area and during Memorial Day Celebrations.

It may happen or it may not happen, but the prospect of having a more successful public viewing of the series makes me feel like there’s a future for Diluted Loss and the message it’s trying to promote.

And hopefully, a future for me as an artist in a world outside of the River City.

Thanx for viewing…



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