Monday, November 23, 2009

Renovation Steps Up

The Montreal Worldcon's recent payment fiasco to Anticipation art show participants makes the following news from the 2011 Worldcon in Reno all the more refreshing. According to Colin Harris of the 2011 Renovation team, his Worldcon compatriots are willing to make the ironclad guarantee that they will pay the artists within 30 days of the Worldcon art show.

My thoughts: I certainly understand my fellow artists' cynicism about this news. Is this more ironclad than when the 2009 Montreal Worldcon said in writing that it would pay within sixty days (which was an abnormally protracted wait for artists to receive payment) and then proceeded to take more than ninety, which was absurd? Why should this proclamation matter, when Worldcon receives no monetary penalty for tardy payment to artists, and they've already proven they don't always adhere to their own rules in this regard? Both are good points.

My feeling is that paying artists within thirty days of the Worldcon Art Show is a fair and reasonable turnaround, and really any well-organized con should be able to adhere to such a standard. It's early in the game for the 2011 Reno Worldcon but here's why I think they'll make good on their word.

1. Colin Harris is a longtime sf/f art afficionado and is a veteran Worldcon organizer. He co-chaired the 2005 Worldcon, and has already been a strong voice for a better art show in 2011, and better usage of participating artists' talents.

2. Several of the Reno organizers attended the recent IlluXCon. They distributed flyers, socialized with artists, and threw a party for IlluXCon participants. All of these folks were there first and foremost because they genuinely love the visual arts of sf/f. I think they want to see Worldcon produce a better art show than it has in recent years, and they're willing to examine their own methods in order to do so.

3. Elayne Pelz is the Art Show director for the 2011 effort. She was the Art Show director for the 2007 Worldcon in Japan, and artists' payments were smooth sailing at that one.

4. Finally -- the Reno Worldcon committee members are a super-veteran crew of people who have either served as division heads or chaired Worldcons past. I think this recently-announced policy is something they probably had in place before the Worldcon Montreal payment fiasco. I think it's good news for artists that they want to make it clear they won't repeat the same mistakes.

Hat's off to the 2011 Reno bid. Artists -- what do you think? Thoughts?


Blogger Mair said...

Not an artist, but since they've put their names "out there" (via your blog) I am thinking they are very likely to honor their payment commitment.

12:43 AM  
Blogger Stu said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12:40 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

I agree, Mair. All indications are that the Reno Worldcon is gonna be a terrific overall event. :) Happy Thanksgiving!

9:08 AM  
Blogger Mair said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and Traci, John.

9:36 PM  

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