Thursday, April 28, 2011


So, I'm very aware that this is way overdue but it's about time that I post some about my senior exhibition that occurred 4 weeks ago and that I've been going on and on about for the past 7 or 8 months.  Immediately after it I was so exhausted.  My mind was still like what I'd imagine a sailor's to be after a storm calms--glad it's over but still pacing around as if there's something else to do.  Speaking on those terms I realized after it was all over that the day ends and another one comes fully prepared with its own bag of tricks, or as Matthew would say it, "Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."  I'm happy more than ever now to find myself being a project oriented person because now that that particular chapter has closed I can look forward to see all the new adventures that are to come, the next things on the horizon.

Before I move to those things though I think it'll be good for me to jot some things down and pick them out of my brain concerning my senior exhibition.  For those who missed it for whatever reason and are wondering what it looked like I put a little flash thing together to show you! Check it out!

.::Move your mouse across the image to make it move::.
   (You might have to click on it first)

Sure, I know the animation is cheesey and I could have done a little better with the documentation but I'm happy I got any done considering how much was happening at once.

My teacher, Michael, introduced me before I gave the talk about my work and generously pointed out a few things about myself and my work that I hadn't quite acknowledged desire to experiment.  I've done it in every art class I've had since my Freshman year.  For whatever reason I always feel as though I need put my own spin on the assigned projects.  To make them something that'
That brings me to my 2nd and main thing I realized about my project after it was completed.  As much as I tried (and did a pretty good job of I think) to display the information in an unbiased way my own ideas and opinions subtly cried out.  I know that sounds like an oxymoron but it's true.  My ideas were neatly knitted within the work in such a fashion that had one not known me or had not been looking those particular ideas would not have known to notice, but as soon as I look at the reasons of why I displayed the information this way or photographed them like that or whatever aspect I did intentionally I become very aware that I am as much a part of the work being exhibited as the photographs themselves.  I might as well have drawn a target in the room and put my face in the center of it.

In my 1940's to Present art history class we have studied artists whom I really like such as Rauschenberg and John Cage, who was working mostly with music, who have spent their life figuring out ways to create work that exhibits itself without the artist's presence, meaning that whenever you look at the artwork there is no way of deciphering who the artist is...or was. I appreciate their efforts in pushing the boundaries of the art realm but I do not believe presenting my views, particularly in the way I did, through my artwork is in any way "weak" or bad artwork.  In fact, considering the subject matter I think it actually strengthens the overall affect.  Think about it.  It's almost as if I had a conversation with anyone who looked at the work without even having to exhort my breath.  What I have been working on for so long is trying to understand how to create and control one's experience he or she has through their, intentional or not, interaction with the artwork.  I feel as though I successfully created an atmosphere in which the viewer of the exhibition felt a connection to the artwork, it is nearly impossible not to because of the encompassing nature of the exhibition after you've walked into it.  As you move it changes and all the photos seem to converge and move... The work, whether purposeful or not, that is an embodiment of my own ideas forces a dialog between itself and the viewer and, hopefully, stimulates a psychological and mental discussion between itself and that very viewer.   Makes me wonder what some of those great art theorists would have said about it.  They probably would have ripped it apart.

Either way, wading out of the deep end...the entire experience was one that won't be forgotten and one that I think, overall, was a success.  It felt good to finish it.  As aforementioned, I'm now pressing forward and moving along at making other projects come to life of which I've previously been working on.  I have set up a challenge for myself to see if I can come up with some creative fundraising ideas using my artwork be it audio, photography, video, or whatever else I scrounge together to raise $5,000 for my trip to Kenya which will be a whole another experience, artistically and otherwise, within itself but that deserves a post to itself.  I've got some things that I have been working on but I will reveal those ideas as time progresses.

Bravo, if you've managed to read this far and follow my train of thought.  If you feel like I missed something or would like for me to elaborate on any other part of my senior exhibition post it in the comments box and be it worthy I will make another post.  :)



Presence of the artist

1 comment:

  1. Awesome job, Josh! The flash thing above did not do your project justice but its the closest thing you can have for not being there in person!
    Your blog is very well written. Did I say awesome job?! :)