making special



the joggingHomo Aestheticus



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4 responses to “making special

  1. tara

    Is that a toothbrush? Are the brown ones more meaningful?

  2. zzttpp

    1 pair black sneakers
    1 pair black loafers
    1 pair brown loafers
    1 pair black boots
    1 pair black pumps
    1 lightbulb
    1 toothbrush
    1 carpeted staircase

    Since it was my movement that this static obstacle defense intended to thwart, I cannot speak for its maker, further than saying upon discovery it was understood in the immemorial vein of the banana peel, rollerskate, toy soldier, marble, etc. while being more of a tactical composition.
    Perhaps the jogging’s Free Art essay/manifesto might elucidate…

    • tara

      ….”the artist is on her knees. the problem we face is one of dependence. Why is it that artists always need someone else to show their work for them?
      This was a romanticized discourse”….

      “The object emerges as the ideal mirror: for the images it reflects succeed one another while never contradicting one another. Moreover, it is ideal in that it reflects images not of what is real, but only of what is desirable. In short, it is like a dog reduced to the single aspect of fidelity. I am able to gaze on it without its gazing back at me. This is why one invests in objects all that one finds impossible to invest in human relationships.”- “we” who are not there, can imagine and infer.

      “Free Art does not necessitate its participants stop making art objects, but that they start taking pictures of those objects and offering them for the widest viewing audience possible on the internet. ” -thanks for sharing.

      “the rule that you can’t wreck the work you are there to see” – other than picture taking, how did you interact with this obstacle? what would you have recalled without the use of your phone? how did you know it was your movement it meant to thwart?

      “The opportunity to experience the feelings of power provided by physical objects comes at the cost of an even greater matter of control: who determines art’s representation.” – what do you think another viewer would have gained from the interaction with the obstacle? is it meant to be manipulated? is it meant to be left alone like a white cross on the side of the road?

      the Free Art link is appreciated.

      • zzttpp

        I interacted with this ‘work’ for approximately 1 minute. It was constructed by a guest while I was upstairs. I came down and felt immediately blocked as well as the intentionality of the only other person in the building at the time. Once I leapt over the obstacle I was sure I’d been the target of creative labor and grabbed my phone. (Q: How often does one receive an artwork as a gift? A: Everytime.) In the previous days I had just been wondering what I was to do with a overly-functional cell and the ephemeral art I was looking at online.

        Your second paragraph seems to imply a critique of Free Art, that its practitioners have resigned to producing a mirror-object, abandoning their own critical standpoint on such a dominant mode.

        I cannot say what might have happened had I not documented it, but the real question seems to be: How does one know the intention of an object? Answered philosophically (critically) – the answer and the intention may be endless. Yet as with all the posts on this blog, each thought is merely a vehicle for producing what I cannot foresee – not a message consistent with some original intention, but rather the misreadings, slippages, leakages.

        ‘Another viewer’ – what did you gain from the interaction with this obstacle, arranged by a person, leapt over by another, documented by a phone, transmitted by bluetooth, uploaded to a server, read on a blog, … knowing who we know and acknowledging the difference between this web content and ALL the others we’ve consumed …?

        Here’s one of Adrian Piper’s answers to the question, ‘what is the art-object’s intention?’:
        “In the contemporary setting, galleries and museums announce themselves to the public as arenas in which cognitive alertness is required, and in which the viewer’s capacity to understand and situate an anomalous object in its singularly appropriate context will be tested. In earlier historical periods, galleries and museums had different roles: pedagogical or inspirational, for example. But in this one, their primary role, and the role of the art works they exhibit, is to challenge the limitations of the viewer’s conceptual scheme – his presuppositions about reality, the human condition, and social and personal relationships, as well as his presuppositions about what art is and what an exhibition space is supposed to do. By introducing into a specialized cognitive context singular objects that defy easy categorization, galleries and museums signal themselves to their audience as purveyors of heightened awareness through the objects and artifacts they display. Generated by a culture that values innovation for its own sake as well as for its ability to create its own market, these contemporary artifacts function primarily to provoke or stimulate in the viewer more flexible and inclusive conceptualizations of reality that can encompass them. In this sense, contemporary art offers a deliberate and paradigmatic experience of theoretical anomaly. [ . . . ] A human subject who deploys these strategies in other interpersonal contexts is vulnerable to criticism by a participant who feels that the leader, trainer or therapist is “reacting personally” to him: who just doesn’t like him, is personally attacking him, manipulating him, or projecting her own problems onto him. And in this type of situation, such criticisms may be justified. But in an art context, they cannot be.” —Piper, Adrian. RSS2: Kantian Conception. Chapter XI. Xenophobia and Moral Anomaly.

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