Name Change

Bit of a pointless post but...

I've renamed my blog to 'an artist not making art'. I kept using this when I had to describe what I was up to on a recent course and all the tutors said this should be my tagline. So with that in my mind I thought it could be my blog title! Will post a bit later today about some interesting stuff I'm up too. But work on Monday looms - full time (crappy) work here I come. Ohhhh hopefully not for too long!

Looking Ahead

Well I think I’m officially graduated…

Minus the donning of a very horrendous looking black cloak and hat and chucking it in the air and having the lovely photos with the parents, it is finally feeling that my years of being a student and being in education are finishing. Although my last post stated the ‘end of education’, I didn’t really recognise what stage of my life I was in. And it’s the adult stage. My sister text me the other day saying “Welcome to real world” and I think, although rather blunt!!, she’s right as student living is a bubble of drunkenness, happiness and food (for those unaware EVERYONE puts on weight when they go to uni and develop the ‘fresher’s stone’. My mum says I haven’t and puts it down to ‘maturing and becoming a woman’. I think it’s purely a dirty addiction to McDonalds.)

The world of student discount, tax exemption, overdrafts and dirty smelly houses are unceremoniously finishing. I feel I’ve learnt a lot about myself. I’ve grown up and become much more independent and confident in myself, but I still feel far too young. I still get ID-ed, very often in fact, and I know I look quite young but I felt that the moment I got my results I’d be elated (I wasn’t) and be able to walk into a full time job (I haven’t) and be fully respected as an adult (I’m not.) I suppose what I’m attempting to say is that graduating hasn’t been what I thought it would be. I imagined drunken night (there were some) after night and floating away on cloud nine ready to embrace life! But it’s been some what of a reality check.

Yesterday evening I met with a course tutor Jo. I’d spoken to her over facebook about how to get a blog (this blog in fact) ‘out there’. We ended up chatting about everything for almost two hours and it was very refreshing. Jo seemed please with my enthusiasm and keenness to push myself forward and was impressed with my ideas (at least she seemed to be!) I’ll post more of my ideas when they are more concrete in a few days after a summer school for creative ideas I’m currently enrolled in.

So I am positive now. I’ve got my upset times of grade out of my way and actually the finishing of my degree has been very exciting. It’s daunting and very engulfing but I’d highly recommend the experience to anyone. But now in the real world it’s all about work experience and getting my name out to the right people, off my own back – no one should expect to be carried along. I’ve realised grades are only a small section of my degree – it’s my friends, experiences and knowledge that are the most important.

Oh and in answer to the blog questions it all got answered for me here:

This is only my fourth post. So I’m trying to work hard at getting a solid blog before I spend the time looking at others and hopefully getting noticed through mine.

YouTube hits to become contemporary art?

Although seemingly desperate attempt to get the ‘youth of today’ involved in contemporary art, the Guggenheim Museum of Modern Art are welcoming entries via YouTube to be selected by a panel of renowned arty folk to be exhibited in the gallery this October. This will then mark the start of the ‘YouTube Play Biennial’. A cheesy American voiceover for the ‘How To…YouTube Play’ video greets me online, of similar esque to Apple’s infamous hip videos. Exciting graphics, bright colours and yes at 24 seconds a young, stylish looking man in a black t shirt (below) and dark background pops up to chat to me. Amazing stuff.

I’m not ridiculing this event in fact I feel that it marks the beginning of the art world accepting how people interact in this current day. Video is becoming a huge part of our lives and of art, but I don’t necessarily think YouTube in galleries is the way forward. If I have a problem, I type in ‘How To….’ in YouTube and immediately I’m inundated with videos from odd looking teenagers in their rooms or fit muscle bearing women in their home gym ready to motivate me and inspire to loose my muffin tops. YouTube has also become essential to the 21st century marking the power of virals. Millions of viewers, myself included, were part of the worldwide hoax of cell phones being able to pop kernels of corn. With millions of viewers globally it was a clever marketing campaign by Cardo Systems the makers of Bluetooth headsets. Other infamous YouTube videos are ‘Charlie bit my finger’ – a painfully overplayed video of a two children just being ‘cute’ with 202,404,269 viewers and of course Britain’s Got Talent dowdy woman turned superstar Susan Boyle with 94,711,979 viewers.

But how can I possibly rate Susan Boyle against works of modern art? Does a Howard Hodgkin or work of Sophie Calle sit comfortably against angry people videotaping their unheard feelings or men dressing up singing Abba? I don’t believe it does. I appreciate what the Guggenheim is doing and fully welcome and new approach to the traditional, and often elitist way of submitting work, but I feel the real artists will possibly be overlooked for the more comedic value and bizarre videos.

But I’m not writing it off, I promise – I am interested in what will come of this digital age of communication and art.

The End of Education....!

Well the three years are finally up – and I can’t quite believe it. Didn’t get the result I wanted, so feel extremely disappointed in myself. My parents and friends are proud of me, and I know I should be myself but I’m just not. I think it is an underlying flaw within in me that I set very high standards for myself and probably others around me. When disappointment strikes I find it extremely difficult to over come – so after three years extremely hard work, I don’t think this disappointed will be easily evaporate.

I’m still waiting on my tutor to have tutorial with me in order for me to understand what I did wrong – a kind of guilty pleasure like me looking at snakes when I now they terrify me, it almost verifies my fears. I also feel I need this to give me a boost and bring back a lot of confidence I’ve lost. I’m entering Suffolk Young Artists this year, but due to my grade, I feel worried about exhibiting work encase I get knocked back again. Onwards and upwards I know….positive feeling will come I promise!

My final degree show piece was a performance with an actor in order to discuss what art is. It was a jokey and comical seminar session aimed at you being able to buy the skills necessary to effectively view art. Disaster struck on the day of assessment when the actor failed to turn up and it genuinely thought that was it and my degree was over!! Another attempt and I hired two different actors – although both very successful, it wasn’t what I originally planned. The original actor did however turn up on the Private View and relief swept me, although the tutors never so the ‘right’ performance.

I am pleased with the work, however I think my result has blackened my actual view of the work. Hindsight is an awful thing, and I think I am being testament to this. However, I know I will attempt to make the most of the situation and it will only push me further in everything else I dream to pursue.

For more work, please look at my website

What does the future of art hold for us?

I recently ‘i-player-ed’ (excuse my 21st century lingo) BBC’s Culture show which delved into the ideas of how art and science successfully work together and how this is changing conceptual modern art. Historical evidence combined with our increase in new scientific technology has allowed the art world to see many famous painting become mere copies and imitations thus demoting them of their famous status.

We understand this trickery through tests on the frame of the canvas alluding to the wood bearing resemblance to a much newer tree than that of the actual painting age. Fakes have also extended to the ageing of a painting, such as painted cracks to imitate authenticity and canvas surfaces covered with a yellowish hue to simulate ageing are all now understood through advances in technology. The Culture Show’s Andrew Graham-Dixon interviews Rachel Billinge from the Royal Science Museum who too presents a physical idea of imitation as I have no idea if they are male or female? His, well possibly her, let’s go with ‘their’ use of science to help art historians reveal the truth behind paintings is fascinating and a real testament to what is scientifically possible, but I feel slightly down heartened by it. Our ‘want it now’ generation, of which I admit I am part of (I get angry if my internet browser takes more than 3 seconds to load) as we are an age of desperation and constant access to things. It seems a shame that some of the oldest pieces of trickery are being unearthed, as the ‘fakes and copies’ will now be disregarded as rubbish which seems awfully sad. Like the magic circle or magicians, some tricks should go with us to the grave never to be unearthed and for the man in his coffin to continue smiling that he has fooled generations of his ancestors.

How contemporary art will develop is something that interests me. Having recently graduated from a Fine Art degree I have been a part of art ‘now’ but what form will art take in the future? Currently, in my opinion, we have moved away from minimal look to minimal in context. Art is more about a theory or idea that is more often than not invisible to the art viewer. Performance, sound, film and text are all art mediums that are leaving painting and sculpture by the wayside. This may be an ignorant understating of art, and I’m not saying painting is by any means a ‘wrong’ choice, I just feel it has become less popular. Art is continually changing and evolving with trends, and my generation seem to enjoy more up in the air context that pushes our thinking rather than our eyes. Like fashion trends come round again and again, so will art. I remember seeing my mum getting changed for dinner with her friends when I was very young, getting into a patterned jumpsuit with shoulder pads up to her chin and all I could do was grimace. I currently own a playsuit and own tops with shoulder pads, and now see my mum as very fashion forward – if only she had saved her clothes I could own vintage possessions! I do believe that we will see a time when gallery walls are covered in large paintings of still life’s and portraits – but the subjects probably donning space suits rather than cod pieces.

Ben Lewis meets with some very bizarre ‘question men’ who specialise in, wait for it, questions. Although a somewhat odd career choice, they analyse questions and how a correct survey of 1000 people can be a good estimate of 5 per cent of the UK’s views. Lewis wanted to create a survey to understand what people thought of the way art was developing and changing and so asked Professor Rob Briner (the odd question man) to help him. I, in an odd coincidence, remembered filling out this survey online a while ago after my lecturer sent it my way, and found the questionnaire drawn out, long and very unnecessary – not that I’m questioning ‘question man’s’ PHD at ALL. Never. The most poignant question was “artists earning over £1,000,000 while they are living are NOT worth the £1,000,000 and I agreed. I feel consumed with rage fairly often with the constant over estimation of a conceptual artist. Friends of mine who sell art work base a price of a piece on the cost of materials and an hourly rate combined. But many of the million pound artists barely touch their artwork as their assistants do the leg work. But this seems to be the future of modern art – money. How much can I sell work for? How amazing and famous can I possibly be?

This represented through current art trends, but I feel a change in the wind. Video and performance are becoming ever more popular, which in turn reduces the praise and gratitude that the artists expect. Low budget and low status are being created to remove themselves from the money side of art, as art should be a passion for people, not a job. And I feel this is eloquently displayed through my year group’s Fine Art Degree show – minimal, conceptual and honest.