Sunday, January 23, 2011

Artist Mira Schor on the "constant negotiation between world and self, the art itself and the making of it":

"I’m committed to the artist as a historically produced thus educated to history, culturally contextualized person who should have as much control of theory as possible so it won’t have control of her–but at the same time I love the development of working–call it studio practice even when it isn’t what that used to mean or what I do–and I know that creative work needs to occasionally be unmoored from overdetermination."

"In this city/graduate school environment, the upside of constant interaction/confrontation with people, work, and ideas that you have to understand, absorb, react to, sometimes defend yourself against, yet often allow to transform you, is that complacency is hard to come by. The downside is that there may not be time to process everything and all the outside voices can drown out the interior ones or, even, according to certain theoretical outlooks, deny that an inner voice exists inasmuch as it might be associated with autonomous art practices which have been deemed obsolete. And you are constantly having to put yourself forward, which for the MFA student means constantly talking about what your work means leaving little time for either doing it or for doing work whose meaning you might not have a ready explanation for, work that is transitional, even work that is a “failure.” You become all outside speech and less inside voice until you are running on empty."

"Thinking of this split between information and critical discourse on the one hand, and studio/post-studio/post-post-studio practice on the other in relation to the usefulness of graduate school, one could truthfully state that the knowledge one is exposed to in school is available in the world at all times, especially in urban centers: museums, galleries, books, art magazines, internet sources, panel discussions, artists’ lectures all abound, though graduate school intensifies, categorizes, and filters that knowledge through the interpretive structuring lens of the school’s ideology and its faculty’s strongly held viewpoints while insisting on disciplined and timely engagement and response on the part of the student. But critical responses to your artwork by individual artists and critics is much harder to come by outside the academic structure, people are just too busy and will certainly not be able to give sustained attention, so if you don’t do the work when you’re in school, you lose out on the unique opportunity to get concentrated and sustained feedback, when you want it and even when you don’t."

(source)

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