Artist’s Statement

Now, I may have posted this video before but it is so long ago I can’t find it anymore … anyway it’s worth posting again…

It is because I have had to start thinking along the Artist’s Statement lines that this is now relevant. There is a large part of me that would like to say, hey, this is all BS and just look at what I made/painted/whatever. The theoretical analysis of my View of Myself is gonna always be full of delusion and PC considerations. It’s like the FaceBook face. The Me I would like people to think I am.

Self knowledge is extremely hard to come by and an insightful review of my Self, let alone my work, would be of little interest to the people who want to read an Artist’s Statement.

The Artist’s Statement is full of platitudes, stereotypes and self-aggrandisement, and if it wasn’t so …. well, this is the problem. There are certain forms and attitudes that it is necessary to adhere to in order to be considered. You can’t be politically incorrect, you have to treat your work seriously, and conventions have to be conformed too, unless you are famous and can afford to flout acceptance by the Art Establishment. So considerable twisting and contorting of language and the truth are used to disguise the fact that I am a Wannabe that likes messing with paint/stuff/whatever … an Artist.

There is now no product, no service, no government department that doesn’t have a mission statement. Three words that convey the basic lie that this organisation is only in existence to serve you, the customer/client. Generally “making life better”, “spreading love”, “saving mankind” etc etc is the number one aim of all multinationals, not “avoiding tax’, “selling you crap” and “depleting reserves” …. for obvious reasons.
Artist’s Statements are made in the same vein and mostly cannot be denied, nor can the truth be told [soror Nishi …”Messin’ with Resin”] and so it is necessary to swallow hard and try and cut the BS as best I can.

I have always assumed iconoclasm to be the default setting for an artist, but it is not so … criticising the status quo is never welcomed by the status quo. It’s OK to be a loose cannon when you’re famous if you don’t go too far (John Galliano) but “unknowns” really need to behave in an accepted manner, it’s a form of Art World etiquette.

Best way for me is to think of an artist’s statement as a dodgy frame around a picture which I will assess myself…. and when I have to write one, I will play the game.






Filed under Art and stuff.

9 responses to “Artist’s Statement

  1. Your success depends on how well you finesse your iconoclasm.

  2. Maeve

    Hey sis,
    If you ask me, artists do not extrude themselves through society’s sieve and into some one-size-bloody-well-fits-all mould. But commercial designers do, because the so-called “commercial artist” is just that–after a pound, a buck, a euro. ‘Nothing wrong with that. And nothing wrong with thinking of this particular endeavor as commercial… The artist on leave–of his senses, perhaps. But I don’t think so “-)

  3. hehehe….well, it’s a minefield out there..:))

  4. Maeve

    Oh WAIT– I’ve got it!
    We bring you to the States, to some dirt-poor Appalachian shanty butt up against the ditch of some narrow windy bumpy back-road. We set you and your “wares” on the front stoop, maybe give you a jug of gin and home-rolled smokes.. oh oh… and some overalls. THEN, we arrange to drive the right potential clients past you, your shanty, and your wares (field trip to snatch up diamonds-in-the-rough talent, I’d call it) Ipso Dipso! Soror is discovered!
    Nah. This is too easy! Well… sure would be a hoot and a holler!

  5. I guess it’s the art-world equivalent of a good suit, showing you know the rules, etc.

    A friend & I once had a joint show, and we were off in the corner grousing about the “30-second ‘what are your influences’ pitch” when we really wanted to engage people on ‘what do you like about this?” or “how do you feel?” or etc. & the gallery owner told us, “Make nice, do the thing; these people are really here to buy a piece of you & the artwork is their excuse to get close to you & take home ‘having an experience with an Artist’; the paintings are just tokens of that” – hence my piece ‘Commodity’.

    Suit up and show up suitably. The video is great.

    @Maeve yay! Someone who won’t yell at me for discussing Art Vs Design o/

  6. @Maeve yeah, we could call it ‘Red Soror’ or “Bull Dog” or something. Plus we’d have to teach her so say ‘aww shucks’ in a convincing manner to indicate how unlike she was compared to all the other self-aware/important artistes.

    Where’s Charles Saatchi when you need him?

  7. @ Botgirl … that is great.

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