It is time we discussed the necessity of the resume, and what to list on it.Â If you feel you haven’t yet accomplished enough to make for an impressive resume, then writing a biography may be better suited to your career at this stage.Â But whether you feel you’re ready to write a resume or not, I’d like for you to read through this section.Â It will likely give you several ideas about how to describe your work, and may also teach you a lesson or two about promotion.Â
By the way, please do not look down on the word “promotion.”Â Picasso was a master promoter.Â So was Diego Rivera.Â So was Andy Warhol (although I suspect that getting shot was outside the realm of his plans).Â It’s a part of the business.Â It can be a very distasteful part if handled in the Barnum and Bailey sense, or it can be a very sophisticated aspect if handled with integrity and intelligence.Â I personally see it as an essential means of informing my clients about the worth of my artists, which in turn assists me in helping my artists make aÂ living.Â Needless to say, I’m pretty keen on both points.
As for resumes, I’ve printed below what a typical one looks like–this for a sculptor who works in stainless steel.Â Some of theÂ achievements I’ve listed are substantial, some are not.Â I list them all regardless, since as a whole they seem more impressive than they do individually.Â Use this format as a guide for your own resume if you like, or formulate your own.Â So long as the thing reads well, it should do just fine.
1955Â Degree in Sculpture Design, Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, CO.Â
1962Â Studied sculpture under Richard Stankewicz, New York, NY.
1992Â Sculpture in the Park, Loveland, CO.Â
1993Â LauMeirer Contemporary Craft Show, St. Louis, MO.
1993-97Â Sculpture in the Park, Loveland, CO.
1998Â Two-Man Show, Shidoni Gallery, Santa Fe, NM.
1999Â One-Man Show, Leopold Gallery, Kansas City, MO.
1999Â Sculpture in the Park, Loveland, CO.
2000Â Two-Man Show, Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM.
2000Â Sculpture in the Park, Loveland, CO.
2001Â One-Man Show, Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM.
2002Â One-Man Show, Leopold Gallery, Kansas City, MO
2002Â Sculpture in the Park, Loveland, CO
2003Â One-Man Show, Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
2004Â One-Man Show, Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
2005Â One-Man Show, Leopold Gallery, Kansas City, MO
2006Â One-Man Show, Adieb Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
2007Â Boston Museum of Fine Art
Leopold Gallery; Kansas City, MO
Adieb Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
Savage Stephens Gallery; Carmel, CA
1994Â â€œMonolith in Steel,â€ Private Collector, Denver, CO.
1996Â â€œWestward,â€ Private Collector, Miami, FL.
1996Â â€œThe Journey,â€ Private Collector, Las Vegas, NV.
1996Â â€œElevators, Wheatâ€ Kansas City Board of Trade, Kansas City, MO
1997Â â€œPathfinder,â€ Private Collector, Santa Fe, NM.
1998Â â€œPierce the Sky,â€ Paul Mueller Co., Springfield, MO.
1998Â â€œHemisphere in Steel,â€ Douglas Adams (author), London, U.K.
1999Â â€œRipened Grain,â€ DeBruce Grain, Kansas City, MO.
2000Â â€œFloating Sphere,â€ Private Collection, San Diego, CA.
2001Â â€œDesign and Innovation,â€ Mack Truck, Bethlehem, PA.
2001Â â€œPicassoâ€™s Eye,â€ Private Collection, Boston, MA.
2002Â â€œDesign and Innovation,â€Â Overland Park Convention Center,Â Â O.P., KS
2003Â â€œGiving More Than You Take,â€ Osborne Plaza.Â Olathe, KS.
2004Â “Stellar Outpost,” Private Collector, San Diego, CA.
2005Â “Horizon Interrupted,” Loveland Sculpture Garden, Loveland, CO.
2006Â “Sphere,” H&R Block; Kansas City, MO
2006Â Not By Bread Alone, Paperback Book
2005Â Southwest Art Magazine
2003Â Kansas City Star Magazine
2001Â Kansas City Star
This resume fits onto one page, and quickly informs the reader of the sculptor’s accomplishments.Â Do I mention that he very nearly gave away his first commission, “Molamphy Memorial,” as well as his second, “Inner Section”? No.Â Nor do I ever mention his sacrifices, or how tough the road was, or how numerous the setbacks.Â The only thing I indicate is how successful he is now.Â Besides, once I took on his career, his prices rose, his belief in himself shot up, his designs became bolder, and now he’s one of my most sought-after artists.Â In fact he has exhibit next September in the Boston Museum of Fine Art.Â Now he and I can talk about his starvation years, but only because success has been achieved.Â If we hadn’t achieved it yet, there’s no way I would discuss it.
In filling out your resume, you’ll likely have to use a similar tactic of making yourself seem more successful than you feel you are.Â There is nothing wrong with this, so please feel no guilt.Â
Example:Â When the Beatles, still largely unknown in 1962, were preparing to leave Liverpool for an engagement in Germany, their manager printed up posters promoting a concert they were to give prior to their “European Tour.”Â That tour was a long-term gig at a cheap club in downtown Hamburg, where they slept in a dank back room, and played eight hours a night for pennies–or pfennigs, if you prefer.Â Still, did this type of promotion detract from the uniqueness of their music?Â To the contrary, it helped their style to become better known.Â Within two years they were on the Ed Sullivan Show, and the world of music, if not the world of youth, was changed forever.
IfÂ your work has true substance, and you know it has substance, these mild exaggerations do no one any harm.Â It’s the work that counts; the promotion merely helps you to take it where you need to go.Â So fill out the resume, exaggerating if you must, but never lying.Â As the years go by you’ll achieve things of greater significance, making moot the need to exaggerate.Â Of course it would be great if you never had to exaggerate at all, but rarely will you meet a successful artist who didn’t have to do the same when they were younger.Â Very rarely.