This week was a week of great exploration.
I was very happy to listen to the presentations of my fellow first years. I left with a dense list of artists to explore. Some highlights for me were Paul Laffoley, a visionary painter that Alex mentioned who incorporates sciences both real and fictional as well occultist magic and cosmology. This piece pictured above was one of the favorites I’ve unearthed in my google searching. Thanks Alex! Brent Green was an artist a responded to quite well and his work was mentioned by Carissa who has a really great spectrum of influences. The work she referenced directly was the reproductions of the building constructed by Leonard Woods
After a fun journey engaging with Seven Days In The Art World, I am happy to be jumping into the more dense and academic Your Everyday Art World. Its sociological look at this community I’m sure will look more thoroughly into the group of low-fi, DIY artists that we were hoping would make an appearance in the last text. I am very interested (as i presume many of us are) about what it takes to function outside the academic sector as an artist and maker. I am also very interested in what it means to open and facilitate and art space which brings me to the makers Ynam Ynam who we saw Wednesday.
It was really enjoyable to see two kind and very humble-hearted artists whose work is centered around community, family and the act of spending time together. It was also inspiring to go into the logistics of their space and what it takes to create a functional independant art space. What I enjoyed the most about their breakdown of their collective work was the fact that they set boundaries and expectations to ensure the finest quality of experience and of product. From the wood they source to the produce they use for their meals, they take a very hollistic approach to making and I really appreciated that. Being a very grassroots organization, I presume that they must really be organized to ensure nothing slips through the cracks.
In regards to my own work, I have been recently exploring my own family history and came across the business card of my great-great-great grandfather Welcome Nott (yes, his name was Welcome). According to my great-grandmother who is still living at the age of 104, Welcome was a professional photographer who moved to Lodi, Wisconsin during the turn of the century where he and his wife lived until their deaths. I have been working on a simulated ethnographic exhibit focusing on one individual and their collection in an attempt to play with the “truth value” of items as proof or artifacts of one’s existence. I was initially concerned with entirely inventing a character from a foreign community other than my own because I feared the act of excessive appropriation. In talking with my great-grandmother, it seemed to make sense to begin with a character I knew somethings about and who was directly related to me. Welcome himself cofounded the Lodi Curling Club as well as photographed his way around Wisconsin. In my work, I plan to litter the exhibit with “artifacts” of my own creation as well as help in perpetuate a legend or series of tall tales in an attempt to manipulate the truth in a museum. In conducting further research toward my own work this semester, I discovered a new term that seems to be accurately defining what I am interested in pursuing. Transidioethnography is a term which fuses autoethnography, multimedia creative processes and historical fieldwork to explore the liminal space that personal histories live within.
I am currently drawing a partially fictional map of Lodi, Wisconsin complete with the details of the Lodi Marshland which seems like an incredible place for all kinds of historical mischief to happen. I am beginning by attempting to contextualize the individuals I wish to explore as well as get to know them as i develope them I would also like to begin working with more intimate items such as wedding bands, clothing, furniture, musical instruments and the kitchen. We will see what happens.
This week, I have also been listening to the music of Joe and Cleoma Falcon who recorded the first known recording of “Cajun” music for Columbia records in 1928. The husband and wife duo created very raw dance music unique to the Acadiana region of Southwest Louisiana near Eunice and Mamou. This bluesy, Creole influenced dance music in French has no comparison and really envelopes, almost possesses the listener. If someone told me that my art contained the traits of raw, unchained mastery that Joe and Cleoma have, I would feel my work was done!