Thursday, January 28, 2010

Junior Seminar Investigation: Rules

on the left: objects drawn with right and then left hand

on the left: a strand of spaghetti thrown onto the wall every time I made spaghetti last semester.

Make a hole in a purse full of seeds and put the purse where there is wind.

The concept of setting up parameters for making art is a pretty accessible way to make work. The top two examples are from Yoko Ono's display at the 2009 Venice Biennale. There was a wall filled with type-written instructions. Here, the text stands alone as a conceptual piece.

Jana Harper had an exhibit in Florence,Italy last spring with a series of "games" that she created while spending a month in an area outside of Florence. “Game One: Assemble the tiniest bouquet. Ever.” “Game Eight: Sit under an olive tree and try and catch the flowers as they fall.” “Game Eleven: Try and draw the wind the way it feels on your body.” The exhibit showed text paired with an image documenting the "game." In an adjacent room, there was a table with a book where visitors were implored to write down a "game" from their own imagination.

Setting parameters such as "make a drawing a day" allow us to maintain discipline while allowing creative juices to flow. Sometimes starting with rules and words is an easier jumping-off point since we are such verbally-based creatures of habit.

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