In what ways do we, both as makers and observers, respond to things presented to us as art? Well, in many and different ways. I recently heard the terrific, versatile, and passionate artist Vik Muniz give an online talk that repeatedly talked about this. For Muniz, an internal, psychic image is at the core of our making and understanding of art. He says that we all distinguish between a good image and a right image on the basis of our mental image, and that it is in the relationship of the materials of the art and that mental image that art is made. I don’t want to speak for him but I strongly recommend you streaming the talk and staying until the end–after, of course, you spend some time on my site.
Soon after making Why Crows Sing Karaoke a friend, who thought the work beautiful and life affirming, asked me the story behind it. I was glad to do so, in part because for me the piece was deeply ambiguous in ways that it had not been to my friend. The piece started as a visual project, with the theme developing more and more as I worked. Once I did, I wanted a setting more than a story, a situation laid out for viewers to build their own meaningful narrative about relationships, the parameters of domesticity, and the making of lives within them, and how public appearance interacts with that domesticity. I hope that I have put enough into the piece so that attentive observers can connect to it with narratives more complex than its surface might suggest. For me any beauty there may be is the beauty of mining joy out of the real and the challenging.
So please considering letting me know how you connect to particular pieces as you explore my site. Commenting is easy. Observe, consider, enjoy.