Saturday, July 18, 2009

What's the point of making stuff?

To clarify my mind- some questions I have been asking myself abut my work (not listed in any order).

1. Who is it for?

- Anyone who likes them. There's no target public, but it's usually people who have a taste for the macabre.

2. What will you do with them after you have photographed them?

- I'll put somewhere or chuck them out them, depending on space. The latter is more likely, though. I'm going to extend this disposablility to ther stuff I make, including paintings- so I'll re-use canvases once I've photographed them.

3. Are they for sale?

- Yes, the price is low. Write me, ( I’ll get back to you.

4. What do they mean?

- Meaning is hard to define in visual art. It isn’t proscriptive. These pieces have a function which is to make life more amusing. I guess I’m trying to draw attention to the strangeness and ambiguity that is everywhere, and to add to it.

5. Why do you like making things?

- I like being surprised by what happens when you play with materials. I think the essence of creativity is play. It's an instinctive delight in materials and their communicative possibiliies.
The technique here is very clean- scissors and card. It's not too difficult and because there is only a limited art tradition connected with paper cutouts, they feel fresh and fun to make. I don't know where they will lead to, which I quite like too.

6. What is the point of making things when there are already so many?

- To satisfy your own creative desires, and entertain others.

I say entertain, because before an artwork is anything else it has to entertain, or the public won't be drawn in. It's not a fashionable world, because it suggest you aren't "deep", but then perhaps being "deep" isn't all its cracked out to be.

Sometimes the things I make are unique, or at least, in conception relatively rare, so having them around is offers anther take on things. If I were just reproducing wholesale from a pattern, though, I still think it would be worth doing, just because it's a satisfying exercise.

I think the "what is the point?" question is very important, because if you can't think of a good answer and if you aren't enjoying making art then you should just give up. There are enough reasons to me miserable without adding to them un-necessarily.

7. Do you think any one gives a hoot about what you make?

- Judging by the number of regular visitors to my sites, and adding to that other people I have on mailing lists and who come to exhibitions I would say between 30 and 150 people give a hoot. Sometimes they leave nice comments, which help me believe that my work matters.

I like being part of a creative network- many artists are very isolated, and very frustrated by what they perceive is the indifference of the general public. The internet is helping enormously to break down this isolation.

8. If you work in one style, then another, aren't you contradicting yourself?

- Probably. But it's only art, you're allowed to be inconsistent.


If readers have any additional questions please submit them, and I will attempt to answer them.

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