Thursday, August 22, 2013

Tempus Fugit Redux - prequel (fixing to start)

So it was a blue moon this week. It's funny, because I didn't know that until after the fact, but I must have sensed it, because I photographed it. I feel like things have been a little uncanny lately - I haven't made anything since Sunday (nothing, no thing, not a thing - sadness).  Instead I've been trying to "build to last," and get ready for Tempus Fugit Redux  by systematically going through my giant "to do" board and literally 'wiping the slate clean' by either doing or re-evaluating and letting go of everything left on the board from the first half of 2013.  Some of the things were harder to let go of than others, but since the show opened in late July, I've been working toward getting back to the starting line so I can press "reset." I got the board cleared Tuesday (Yay!), then immediately filled it again (haha).

One thing I want to do is take some time to reflect on the project as a whole (even though I always want to be doing/making, I feel like I need to restrain myself a little right now, because once I start doing/making, thoughts will be specific rather than general (all time is not the same)). I've been thinking about the overall project and how to refine it, so that it's not about doing the same project over, it's about doing it better. The question is what is "better," and how can I reach it? Since I think by making pictures, I decided to start with the artwork and go backwards ;) The fact that the project ended with a body of work called "The Forest of And, And, And" could mean a few things:

A forest is a place (a complex, mysterious, place full of intricate systems of living things). With Tempus Fugit, I set out to manage space/time to reflect my devotion to art, based on the hypothesis that this would lead to greater happiness. To me, space and time are inseparable (I can only deduce space by seeing movement which happens over time; I only know time exists because I'm in a place and can observe change), so it wasn't a bad idea in theory, but in practice I got overwhelmed (And, And, And), and ended up focusing more on space than time. 

That's ok - lots of good things came out of the focus on space - I live in a different place now than I did at the start of the project. Thoughtful decisions have been made and acted upon, so some of the big questions of place can now be retired (or wiped off the metaphoric whiteboard). I feel like I'm where I'm meant to be for art-happiness (check mark, gold star :)) This go round, Tempus Fugit Redux can focus primarily on questions of time while refining spacial issues. 

But it's not just any forest - it's the place of "And, And, And" - a repetition and a conjunction.

I think the repetition is important. I'm always excited to talk to other artists about process and learn how they make things. Lately, I've been pursuing some specialized technical skills (with a running list of more). In a way, I feel a guilty about this, because I spend a lot (a lot of a lot) of time learning and developing new materials and techniques, and it's a challenging for me to explain exactly why. The list might seems random or like I'm just scattered or never satisfied, but when I really looked at all the skills I want to develop, they do have something in common - they all have to do with repetition. I feel like I'm comfortable making individualized things (like with the Power in Precision Project),  and now I want to learn lots of ways to repeat things, so I can contrast the two (which will emphasize each - ah, there is a method to my madness ;p). I'm honing in on the techniques that will help me make work about individuality.

"And" is a conjunction though - it connects things. "And" indicates something more will follow, a new idea, but one still connected to the previous thought (patterns within patterns within patterns). So maybe its not just individuality, but individuation, the process of something becoming unique (which is why I need to be able to make repetitions and not just create unique things - so I can show the unique separating from the generic). Furthermore, as a conjunction, "And" isn't the idea itself, its the connector - the part that's between ideas. I feel drawn to what is between out of compassion (long story), but the technique should reflect this. I think it's starting to (the chimeras are made up of individual pieces that are sown together so the parts with different materials and techniques make up one form. Moving forward, particular attention directed to 'between-ness' (mission: building a home-place for that which is between).

Lastly, I don't want to ignore that "And, And, And" indicates overwhelmed. I get so excited about learning and making things that a lot of times it's hard to focus on one thing at a time, and there's just so much information everywhere all the time. More mindfulness to working on this. One way might be by limiting things - looking at the list of new directions, most fall into three categories - printmaking, molds/casting, digital. So maybe I'll stick with printmaking for now, and reassess in a few months? 

Hmmmmmm. I feel better already (Now I can get back to making things, right? I kind of bore myself without pictures.)