I joined the society years ago and had my work rejected for the first exhibition I entered (I only entered one picture) I personally felt that there was nothing wrong with the picture – and it now hangs in the office in Japan. I was completely demoralised from the experience and didn’t renew my membership only re-joining as part of the art challenge.
There are a lot of open exhibitions with selection out there and when I enter those I expect to be judged and not get in to the exhibition, but as a member of the society I do not think there should be selection.
A ‘poor’ picture in one person’s eyes is an excellent one in another person’s eyes; a picture I entered to Bath and West was marked doubtful but scored very highly in the public vote.
As a society as well we have a lot of mediums – how does a printmaker judge an oil painting or vice versa?
If we have too many pictures for the space then that’s different and you have to have some selection, but all artists should be allowed to exhibit 2 pictures before the selection is made.
I think the society should be about inspiring and supporting a community of artists whatever their experience – I think selection if it rejects a lot of work could turn people away as it did me.