#Formats & #genres are #rituals.

2013/02/26 § 1 Comment

Over the last week I’ve been tweeting notes and implications on reading What is Art For? by Ellen Dissanayake. It’s all about ‘making special’.

A year ago I starting working on a performance piece libretto [I dare not call it opera as I detest that format…] dealing with our making of things, like baskets, knifes, houses and operas, and thus our specialness as a species, which may not lie in the making of things, so much as in the specialness we make.

Here is a crude mind map of that twitter stream.

Mind map of a twitter stream as I read  What is Art For? By Ellen Dissanayake

Mind map of a twitter stream as I read What is Art For? By Ellen Dissanayake

The thought “Formats and genres are rituals” occured at the end of mapping out the tweets.

I am using a very simple mind mapper that doesn’t even use arrows, thus it is a very unstructured mind map. However as a first draft of an ontology of making, if not an ontogeny of special, I like it.

Naming the Figures of Anticeptual Art, number one: #Swineflu is born!

2012/05/15 § Leave a comment

At my Web 1.0 style personal homepage trying to pass itself off as a gallery, I’ve just worked through to a labelling of the current figures I am working on. I have this need to put them in sets, I do this by naming them.

For example Consorts to the Mountain Goddess.

The new set is Figures of Anticeptual Art. They will not get their own blog.

Now, the thing is, in realising the name Figures of Anticeptual Art I suddenly also recollected that the first of these figures was made two years ago. Thus #Swineflu is Born! (pewter, 2009, wallaby dung outer investment) is the first example of the process where naming is a conscious method of finishing the artwork.

It doesn’t start with an idea or concept, for the naming finishes it. The art is realised, not conceived.

I had just recovered from the misnamed swineflu, (I caught the #swineflu from a young woman who served me a hamburger as I transited through Melbourne back to Hobart from Weilmoringle.)(She did not look well and should not have been at work.) At this time I was wanting to send a piece to the Twitter Art Show, so as I broke open the wallaby dung and plaster it was obvious what the piece should be called. I stopped then and there. I did not even cut it off its cup to retrieve all that pewter.

It was finished in the moment I realised what its true name was.

Twitter hashtag and all.

Still-Life, Still Conscious, Still

2010/08/04 § Leave a comment

The nineteenth-century art critic Théophile Thoré objected to the French term for still life, nature morte, proclaiming, “Everything is alive and moves, everything breathes in and exhales, everything is in a constant state of metamorphosis… There is no dead nature!” The Czech photographer Josef Sudek tersely echoed this thought when he said that to the photographer’s eye, “a seemingly dead object comes to life through light or by its surroundings.” via Threepenny: Smith, Still-Life Photographs.

Still-life could be said to be a lazy format, as it’s subject matter is already close to the creative mechanism of it’s capture; a sort of freeze-drying the music of the soul. It has always intrigued me, as I shake my head, ‘So, why bother?’

But now I view it as a staring outwards from the self but without reflection, without a mirror, and without introspection. More as a wide-spectrum apperception. A notice or consciousness without the buzz of self(-reference); a non recursive moment of attention when words fail our intentions, a nod to the end of a story and the return to camp with a basket of fruit, or a brace of game.

The little essay quoted above, the spur for this post, explores another area why. No they are not dead, but very, very still, smelling a little funny perhaps.

trash log 1095

Another area it’s importance lies is in documentation. (The documentary moment, the turn to list and archive.) Trashlog has been going for many years now and it’s always has been one of my favourites, and is a project close to one I’ve had for nearly twenty years, and which, I hope is now finished. It will draw together these three areas that the frame of the still moment explores that the intention of self can use to document a case (Fall oder Einfall).

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