Sunday, September 17, 2006

Revolution No. 10

UIowa Graduate Printmakers' show Revolution No. 10 can now be seen online. Well, some of it.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

from breanne

this is a response to "autonomous activites" from my friend breanne

i personally feel no conflict about this for several reasons. the first is that i really think my life's purpose is make "picture books"- what is loosely meant as a narrative with words and pictures. ever since i was little, i wanted to be a published author and i really feel strongly about wanting to make books. if you feel most alive when you are making art, if it gives your life purpose and meaning, then that's the important thing.

the second reason is that, though this may sound cynical, i believe that no individual or group can make social change these days. the superstructures of the world- the giant corporations, the convoluted logic of our government and media- have to change or disappear for the world to get better. and the values of all people need to change too. i really believe that the world will only get better when people come to realize that the biosphere really is collapsing, yes, has already collapsed, and that we are dependent on this biosphere and need to start caring for the environment- not dominating it.

there's my two cents.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

beyond art

gary frost said that what he likes about some of the zines in the zine machine is that it's "more than art". this has stuck with me - the idea of making things that are beyond art, that aren't tied down by the parameters of what it has to be once it's called "Art".

i spend so much time trying to make something that's good enough to be validated as art, i haven't even entertained the idea that i could actually be making something that defies this kind of categorization.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

autonomous activities

I'm dealing with a recurring dilemma about the self-serving and elitist nature of art making, where I doubt my work and the purpose(s) it serves. This is after reading a conversation between Suzie Gablik and Ellen Dissanayake, and Suzie says,

"Well, this brings us directly to the issue that concerns me the most at the moment, which is how our modern understanding of, and models for, art are NOT about participation in the social order. They seem more like a means of escape from the world, as in that Flaubert quote I like using so much: "Life is so horrible that one can only bear it by avoiding it. And that can be done by living in the world of art." Today there is this excessive sense of art - along with everything else in our culture - being an individual pursuit, and autonomous activity that is not connected in any profound sense with the world, but is used more as a kind of solace, or retreat, from it. Like psychotherapy, it's done mostly behind closed doors, without any great concern for the state of the world outside. In his book with Michael Ventura, James Hillman indicts therapy for being too personalized and individualized, and claims that it is actually contributing to the disease of our indifference to the world... Hillman also says that we have become so individualized and conditioned to experience ourselves as separate, we now have an actual fear of community."

Sunday, September 03, 2006

1/2 & 1/2

Ok, so I've been thinking of things I want to put in my first issue of "1/2 & 1/2", a zine/comic about being half chinese and half american, and I thought I'd google a bit to see how some other have approached the topic, and here's what I found: an intriguing new comic, American Born Chinese, by Gene Luen Yang.

I haven't read it yet, so I'm not promoting it, but it looks interesting.

and then there was this hilarious audio on the Onion


here's a little tease of one of the souvenirs you'll get when you come on a journey in the arts iowa city gallery on october 13th. but you have to come and get it!