A Twofer Post

January 15, 2016

... you know Two Fer (for) One. Only I guess they are now more commonly called BOGO. But really should be "BOGO*F*. Cuz. FREE.

But I digress.

Yesterday, my brain was drowning in things I wanted to post. (okay so actually? Today. but this'll post tomorrow. so yesterday. see what I mean? d.r.o.w.n.i.n.g!!!) But I'd already written the mega-GnG-post and I knew these'd be overlooked. And they are !important. (only mildly funny if you code) So here.

Number One

This notation in my Note(ation) Book ...

Nothing to do with this class
And everything to do with this class
Part of what we are learning in Grit and Grace, is that some things are never finished. And that's okay. But if it calls to you? Listen! Case in point:

 Last year I made 3 of these crow thingie/assemblages. They're hung up on the doors in my studio. They kinda irritate me because I know something isn't right, but not what. I've asked many folks for feedback (which will lead me to #2 but have patience!) and most 'like it just the way it is'. Only I didn't. Don't.

As I was passing it this morning (yesterday morning per above!), I grabbed it off the nail and did this:

Because it just wasn't working for me. And it said, "Hey! rip that shit OFF!" And I listened.

Does it look better? No. Of course note. But it will. And I'll be listening when it tells me what it DOES need!

Number Two

... and proof that you're getting a twofer!
Again, written in my Notation Book:

 An artist knows when a work has merit or not.

I mentioned above, that I had asked for feedback on the crow pieces from an assemblage art group I'm part of. This week (today ... or yesterday per above) there's a thread going on about "objective critique" ... put in quotes only because NOTHING imho is ever objective as we all have an agenda, known or not.  Someone said the above ... I'm paraphrasing... but the intent is similar.

Comments like these send me into a tizzy of self-doubt. It makes me race up to the studio in a frantic panic of ... wanting? needing to prove myself? to keep practicing so I become said artist? I don't know.  All the worse if said by someone I don't know.

Earlier in the week, I read someone making disparaging remarks about the use of dolls in assemblage. Again, paraphrasing, if one needs to use something that "complete" then what was the point? May as well stick a bird on it and call it done.

Why?
Why is it so necessary to make everyone else's attempts at creativity so small?
Why isn't there room in the world for all of us?
What difference does it make if something is "Art" or not? Has "merit" or not?
Can't it just be?
Can't the act of creation be its merit?

If putting a doll in my work makes it 'less than' well so be it.
And if I can't tell if a work has "merit" or not, makes me 'not an artist', then so be that too.
I'll be sitting here in the sandbox making sandcastles with dolls and bones and paper'n'glue. If you want to join me? I'd love to have you. If not? Well that's okay too.

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4 comments

  1. AMEN!!!! Why the obsessive need to compartmentalize things - art specifically - into good and bad (and every version of the two) categories?!?! As much as I have resisted accepting as much, I'm more and more inclined to think that it really is about the process and what comes up/out through it.

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    1. I'm not sure ... when I'm feeling really judgmental it becomes about being small-minded and talentless(!)... my brain can be a relentless bitch sometimes! Most of the time though, I think it's bedded in fear ...of not being as good as one thinks or wanting to keep one's little bit of the mountain or, in the case of "good" wanting to BE that person, that talent.

      It's so freeing to know all we can control is the process ... the rest is up to someone else!

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  2. I'll join you! and I'll put a bird on it too. :) It is hard to have discussions online I think without knowing the people, their background or even their intonation. I also think that there IS room for us all...just not in the same room sometimes. And that's ok. I don't know if that makes sense. Just keep making, that's what I do. "Let me listen to me and not to them" - gertrude stein

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    1. Yay! *shoving over on the bench*
      And do agree that miscommunication is a pretty easy thing to do online. I guess it was more *my* reaction than who or what was said. And further, the opinion that being "an artist" grants us the right to deem anyone else's work good or bad, is why "art" has such a stigma attached to it. The number of times I've heard people preface themselves with, "well I'm not an artist" or "I know nothing about art" ... so my opinion/thoughts/feelings don't matter. Hey know what General Q Public? If you like it? That's all that matters!

      *Jen puts on her earphones and zones out*

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