Monday, August 2, 2010
Time for Adventures.
This year has made me feel like I'm 20 years old again. It has been nothing but insanely fun and bizarre adventures from asking a cab driver to "drop us off in the alley behind the Double Door" on New Years Eve to my experience last week in the isolation tank. Everything in between, too many adventures to remember, but the ones I do remember make this year, this summer, this time in my life, in all of our lives, exciting again. It's that new life smell. We're all almost 30, some of us are closer than others, and while every once in awhile, we feel the overwhelming pressure of the fact that we are almost 30, we seem to have forgotten, or at least made the decision that what we are doing right will not be what we're doing in another 30 years, and this idea, to me, is totally comforting. I can get all of my 20s out of my system in the next two years because as soon as I turn 30, things will be different for me. For you. For all of us. Our lives with change, but it will be ok, because we are not meant to stay this way forever.
Why.So.Serious??? On Friday, I went to see a preview of my friend's performance piece. It was so different and inspiring to see his work in person, and not just as a photograph, or as some kind of an oral history lesson. Previously, I had a hate-hate relationship with performance art for many years. It wasn't until I took the time to hear everyone out that I began to understand it, and then...I started to like it. After I liked it enough, I loved it so much I wanted to marry it. It seemed to me like the purest form of expression. More expressive than even some of my favorite paintings. ESCANDALO! I understand that art in any form is a deeply personal and intimate thing, and if you make something out of anything, paintings, sculptures, words, yourself, you form a relationship with your creation. Sometimes when it's over, you want to immediately destroy it, but then there are the times you make something so special, you can't let it go. You dig your fingernails in and the next thing we know, you're living in the Misty Mountains, and asking a furry footed midget, "what's taters Precious?"
What I love love LURVE about any sort of performance art is the impermanence of it. Art museums are tombs for artwork. Sure it's fun to see Monet's "Water Lillies" or Picasso's "Demoiselles d'Avignon," but what else? Most people I see wandering through museums pass right by all these incredible pieces, and I can see them mentally checking it off of their list. There isn't any emotion, no connection, no immediacy of a situation. So what?
I saw Marina Abrovomic at the MOMA in New York doing a show called The Artist is Present. One part of the piece took place in the middle of the room, and you could wait in line to sit across from her and stare at her for as long as you wanted. She did this for about 2 months. If you didn't see it the first time, you will never see it again. Ever. Chris Burden stood in a room and had someone shoot him in the arm. Ladies and gentleman, one night only.
A few days after seeing Matt's show, I started thinking that what I love about art, and why I intend to spend the rest of my life in a relationship with art is because I am in love with the impermanence of it. Even if I were to have Matt perform this piece again, it would never be the same show. Seeing the same pieces hanging in the same places in the same museums is tedious and boring. What makes these adventures so exciting is the fact that we will never ever do them the same way again. Last night, I got into some hood rat stuff with my friends, ended up in some awful bars, drank some truly foul liquor, and then somehow made it home. That night will never happen again. Even if I went to every single place I went to last night, in the exact order I arrived, it will never be the same. Routines are necessary, and I understand that. I have them. I indulge them. I hate them.
To find the absolute adventures for the rest of this year, we should, like any great performer, act as if we are unaware of an audience. This is our time to be free. Take a chance to laugh out loud if you think it's funny. If you think I'm a dramatic idiot who looks too far on the inside too much. Do it. I dare you. Have emotions in public and share them with people. Speak words you actually mean, and make art in any form that will degrade and someday turn to yellowed dust in someone's alley. Art shouldn't be forced to last forever, and we should feel sad for paintings locked in museums. They are ghosts of ghosts who cannot die. Create to destroy.
Until then, our adventures continue, and if we're all going to be seen together, we need to all be seen wearing these.