I spent a day going around the East Yorkshire Open Studios and sadly it was more open galleries than open studios. In these straightened times a lot of the artists were taking this opportunity to sell their commodities, I use that word carefully because it seemed almost anything and everything was for sale. I know this may well sound churlish but it would have been a lot more interesting to see the real circumstances of how the art is made not a dressed up fantasy version. Making art is often a mucky business, you make dirt and dust, stuff is spilt, walls are stained, the studio is part workshop, part storage, part office, it’s a real place out of which ideas take form. This sanitized presentation of the creative process seems to me to be doing art a disservice, let people see how hard and difficult it is to realize this stuff, how there are failures, how you need to have a lot of expensive stuff and how making art is so often a struggle. Only by showing the reality do you dispel the myths and ultimately achieve greater understanding, these faux galleries are not open studios. I met a number of artists who seemed mildly embarrassed that they only had a back bedroom as a studio but my view was to celebrate the modesty of their circumstances and to congratulate them on their quiet insistence on being creative despite the odds. Let’s have more mess, more reality and ultimately more understanding of the life and daily toil of being an artist.