Monday, December 21, 2009


In senior seminar we received a 6 by 6 inch acrylic (see through) box. Basically we could do whatever we wanted with them as long as they could be displayed on a shelf in the gallery. Some people used the box as a frame, some to hold materials, some covered the box... others didn't even do the project. (not even going to start on how people expect to succeed as artists when they don't seize every opportunity.)

I spent a good amount of weeks (months?) looking for a dead bird to put in my box. Ended up with offers on dead mice, rats, and snakes... and found out that it's illegal to possess a dead bird. Ultimately, I couldn't find a bird and bought feathers to put in the box. I think the feathers worked better.
I guess this post is me wondering at the way things turn out. And wondering at being conceptual.
In painting especially, I don't think of an end result. If it's from life I obviously have expectations of what I think the painting should end up as, but I still never really know what's going to come out. When I'm done with the painting I'm always surprised. And painting non-representationally is even more surprising when I'm done. I never know where I'm going, I let the paint lead me more than I lead the paint.
It's kind of like working through a problem to find the solution. Which is not how I would go about 3d art like the box of feathers. I can visualize an end result and then somehow have to work backwards from that to end up with what I want.
And where does having a concept come into any of this...? I guess I don't know. I think I produce loaded pieces without realizing it. People talk about my concepts and ideas and what my art means, and I don't have answers if they ask me questions. I don't know what my art means. I don't know that it matters. It doesn't to me. There is just a force pushing me to do whatever it is I do.
Apparently that's not enough though for everyone else.
I guess what I really need to know is if it will help me or hurt me to try to have specific, concrete ideas. Because I always have ideas, they're just a little floaty and fuzzy and I kind of like them that way. Is that bad? Does this mean I'm lacking something as an artist?

1 comment:

  1. Hey Niki-

    I understand what you are saying when it comes to having a lack of explaination or meaning behing what you are creating. I think that even if you are creating without thinking about the end result, there will always be viewers who will have a reaction or connection to it, which will lead them to draw their own conclusions. Perhaps that is one of the key aspects of conceptual makes you think and question! And thank you for commenting on my work back in December on my blog, As far as it's hang-ability...I am finding that the process of displaying my work is becoming the hardest part!