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Creativity is contagious. Pass it on.

There is always a lovely festive summery vibe to my annual pilgrimage to the RA Summer Exhibition but this year this was amplified due to my outing coinciding with London Pride! I felt like I was swept up to the entrance of Burlington House on a wave of acceptance, equality and love that was so inspiring and also very fitting for going to see an exhibition in which anyone at all can enter and get picked to show their work alongside the art world’s biggest celebrities.

The way I approach the summer exhibition and what I would recommend to anyone visiting for the first time, is to be like a dog sniffing out a dog treat. There is so much art that is absolutely awful and you have to search through all this to reveal the gems.

There are always a few pieces that are sufficiently different, interesting, beautiful or skilful to make it worth the hunt. Although I didn’t feel like they had any really WOW pieces this year, like Gregson Perry’s tapestries in the 2013 show, perhaps they are saving that for next year which will be their 250th anniversary.

Highlights for me were the sculpture by Nigerian-British artist, Yinka Shonibare called Windsculpture VI which looked fantastic in the grand classical courtyard as you enter, he also did a great job at curating Gallery VI which was my favourite gallery at the show.

So yes, I had to stop myself from uttering the words ‘my 11 year old could do better than that’ every five minutes, but I did leave feeling the creative buzz that comes from seeing such a lot of variety and from the quirkiness you only get from the Summer Exhibition.

The creative buzz is why I love going to exhibitions, you have to feed your creativity or it can die, or at least go into hiding for a while, and when you are blessed with creativity you have to use it, it’s like Einstein said “Creativity is contagious. Pass it on.”

Gallery VI, curated by Yinka Shonibare RA, at the Summer Exhibition 2017

By Ellie Contreras – Graphic designer for Inca Creative

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