Monday, June 14, 2010

Hamiltonian Show: David Page on "Bad Ideas"

Sculptor David Page has curated Hamiltonian Gallery's culminating season-end show. I'm bummed that I'll miss it, especially because the show's theme/premise is a really intriguing one.

Titled "Private Practice: Bad Ideas, Dead Ends and Guilty Pleasures," the show treats artistic dead ends, sidebar experiments, and other anomalies from the featured artists' studio practice.

I myself flit too much from project to project, working on a myriad of ideas or formats at once without delving deep into one concept or body of work. I know I need to find a balance: to allow myself the fun and crucial discovery that comes from experimentation while also being sure to develop main bodies of work fully, to squeeze an idea to the last drop. Sculptor Natalie Charkow Hollander gave me some good advice to this effect -- as an artist, you have to chose what you do and then do it really well/to its fullest. This has always been hard for me!

The Hamiltonian show runs from June 19 - July 17, 2010, with an opening reception on Saturday, June 19th, from 7 - 9pm.

As written by David Page:

"During his trial before the Inquisition for heresy (for including extraneous elements such as drunkards dwarves monkeys and armed Germans in a biblical painting) the 16th century painter, Veronese declared the following: "We painters take the same license the poets and the jesters take" or in another translation: "We painters allow ourselves the same liberties as do poets and madmen."

Today, the notion of poetic license is well trodden, but the assertion of jester's, fool's or even madman's license is still interesting and provocative.

A colleague, when asked if he kept a sketchbook answered in the affirmative, adding almost sheepishly: "... If only to record my bad ideas."

A loft in my studio is dedicated to the storage of half-baked attempts and fragments that have defied resolution for any number of reasons. This bone-yard of failures serves as my storehouse of ideas.

The problem with success is that we are tempted to emulate it, we develop formulae, develop a "brand"; we begin to believe our own mythology. In short we take ourselves too seriously.

While I sincerely wish the fellows overwhelmingly more success than failure, my charge is for them to occasionally root trough their own mishaps, incomplete ideas impossible plans and improbable scenarios: The madman's liberty for which our old friend Veronese risked his neck."

No comments: