The people at Quilt National have published an article explaining why they disqualified a work by Amy Orr from this year's QN. She violated the rule on prior publication by signing a release that allowed her work to be published, and it was. They are also investigating the publication of the piece of Nancy Erickson's that appears in the SAQA Portfolio, which was also prior to QN. The closing sentence on the article: "It undermines the integrity of the artists and the exhibition if the published rules are not applied equitably to each participant. "
I agree wholeheartedly with that statement. If you are going to have rules, then everybody must follow them. On the other hand, if you have rules that become increasingly impossible to enforce, and when the un-enforcement reflects poorly on the organization, and when the enforcement makes the organization look disorganized, perhaps it's time to eliminate the rule.
QN's goal is to have a 'premier exhibition of new work'. As part of this rule, there is a cutoff date of about 2 years for when the work must be made. I think this is sufficient enough to guarantee new work; in actuality I would bet that most work entered in QN is made in the few months prior to the entry deadline. Who is going to hold back a good piece of work for two years waiting to enter it in QN? Do other prestigious shows have the same kind of prohibition against prior publication? I'm not familiar enough with the general art world to know for sure, but I'll bet not.
It seems to be important in the quilt world because people who go to quilt shows don't want to see the same pieces exhibited again and again. My rebuttal is that Quilt National is supposed to be better than the 'weekend' quiltshows and also, how many people who enter QN would enter those same quilts in a weekend pole and drape show where everything hangs inches from its neighbor?
And other stuff: I'm off for a week of teaching at CraftSummer at Miami University. I sure hope I've got all my supplies and my lesson plans work out and all the equipment works. Makes me quite anxious and gives me sleepless nights.