Sunday, October 25, 2009


My contribution to the third issue of The Paper

A foundation begins a house. Workers dig below the bottoms of our feet, mutilating the surface and inner clay with layers of stone and brick to stabilize the house for generations. Four walls rise connecting a labyrinth of rooms and passageways to separate wings of living space and modernity. Finally a roof encloses this hiding place to protect the inhabitants and provide a fortress against most elements.

Rebels, rule breakers, fringe dwellers deny all boundaries in search for eliminating most standards. Omnivores require various forms to satiate hunger. Is the work choice-less rebel art or harmless innovation? Omnivorous work is less collection or collaboration of “differing medium” but simply an aggressive approach to creation. Omnivore--taking the word’s definition and likening it to our personas. We return to our infantile genesis where behaviors, traditions, and identities were unlearned and we sought pure advancement and sharing. This being the greenest level of humanity –a place of truly embraced nuance. Tiny beasts that grow into finite monsters unaware of the bounded standards we live by. These standards are helpful for positive and negative differentiation concerning uniqueness, but these standards also cloud true opinions and enlightenment. Identities are created for us and we assimilate, gravitate, succumb into our herds of gender, race, class….dancer, painter, writer, etc. These roles have some importance and necessity considering the social flow and they all require certain qualities and gestures as signifiers. However this upward mobility transforms into a collision when we speak inside of these boxes or have trouble stepping outside of them to peak into another backyard. Our work becomes enclosed in someone else’s walls. I refuse to fit my malleable presence and constant soul into finite structure. A diagram, framework, or guide is required but approach should be the variable.

I am my own institution. I am the approach. This is the institution of the rebel omnivore. I am the construct.

As artists and creators we possess a certain outsider scope. We have developed a distinct mind’s eye when connected to Western tradition and worldly function. We don’t live in your house. We have created our own. However, as we build our living fortress, relationships and work can become an unnecessary balancing act. The greatest part of this challenge is the desire for a viable workspace. We can create a home office, rent studio space, travel to residencies in remote locations and find ourselves productive and different-- post. But to take our work a step further, by removing what we understand space to be, what we understand our work to be and, instead slice the surface of literal spatial barriers.

The idea of SPACE: living floating debris in the universe.
“Disorientation begets creative thinking.” Benedict Carey
New York Times, October 6, 2009

As overgrown beasts we rejoin these particles and collect our thoughts. To disengage set structure as I design the most productive workspace begins with elimination. Need to burn the box instead of stepping outside of it.
Thus, we begin simply. We dissect “time”. A month is set aside for a project. In it seven weeks can exist rather than the defining four weeks. Each week could be four days, with the day’s duration evolving as well. Some days could last for ten hours some could last for twenty-nine. Space will develop based on work’s routine. Results could be unimaginable and even difficult to approach for the creator since the work came from a temporal space. Goals previously mapped suddenly produce their own schedules, miss deadlines, and present new accomplishments. You will be able to propose nothing and only experience –your work will begin to happen to you.

And what you do not know is the only thing that you know
And what you own is what you do not own
And where you are is where you are not - T.S. Eliot

This allows your work to become a human entity –experimental and even decisive. Returning us to our curious early stages where we balanced on baby steps. I command my rebel omnivores to respect our work by creating our own clocks. Imagine time as a “palate”, blank and available for innovation. Use this the connection of you, us, and them-- our art. Activate your Gemini and resist.

No comments: