Figuring out my process
During the Lockdown, I have been very active with the Potluck collective. In one of our meeting, we were discussing how to get out of a creative funk or block. Particularly during this time where it feels like art should just take a backseat. However, we came up with the task of creating a list or manifesto of our process, which could range from one point to an essay. This is what I figured out about myself, which really put things into perspective.
What has been working for me so far…
(don’t know how long that gonna last)
What I do
Everything, I look into different mediums and gain a mediocre degree (how I feel) of skill in them. So far its been photography and clay. I think photographically for sure, butI allways have been atracted to instaltion and its positiblities. Which proabably comes from my relationship with sites and language.
I get boosts of motivation around midnight, and its probably because I feel guilty about not achieving as much as I want to in a day. So a lot of thinking and ideas come around that time. It could also just as well be becoming delirious before falling asleep and writing random nonsense.
When I'm stuck, I have to do something different big or small. My best ideas come about when I'm talking to someone or just doing something outside my arts framework.
When I'm overwhelmed, I list. I don't necessarily stick to the list most of the time I just get one done, but the act of listing makes me feel organised. It also helps if its on paper. And I have different lists for everything.
When I'm stuck, I have to research, which often starts with watching a film/interview. I found that I absorb the most information that way. Don't get me wrong I like reading-ish, I just think that my brain is wired in a way that ideas click faster and more effectively when it's audio and visuals.
I like to sit with work that I've already made for a really long time. Just staring at it. I find it really hard to escape the ideas that I've put into it, so I sit for a really long time just understanding what it's doing by itself. I kinda have a conversation with it. Understanding what it likes what it doesn't like, whats its dreams are, and how it feels in the space its in.
Space has always been something that fundamental to my work. How it occupies space, what it's enabling and disabling. I monitor the space without my intervention. Again watching what's already happening there and what how I think the work will feel being there.
A year ago, I wrote my first set of principals that I make art by. Its always changing and adapting, but when I'm lost, I take a look at it and go through the principals that I'm not thinking about enough.
I follow my gut, but when I get an idea for something, I experiment with it. Whether that be clay or tea or screen-printing, I just try to follow my gut and do something with it. Often ill have a connection with something like tea, for example, and ill text and explore different things with it. I don't know why or how it's going to become a "resolved work" but I just go for it. And there have been times where I go… yeah nah, but most of the time its fine really. And even with experiments that have "failed" I've learnt the process and history of that medium, and I negotiate how those aspects support how I'm feeling about the work and if they work alongside my principals. From there, conceptual ideas come through, which is probably why my work is always so personal.
Installation or work or both
If my practice were a book, there would be two of them; one for the work and the other for the installation. But each book would be talking to much about the other. It's a bit messy for sure but they both hold the same weight in my practice. So, a lot of the time I'm planning and the installation for the work becomes some type of performance that no one sees. I love this weird knot that I've created, and it's not something that I set out to do, but it does happen. So when I get overwhelmed by my work, I just know that it's a weird knot and that ok, but I need to remember why it has become that knot. Ironically this paragraph has become a weird knot.
I'll stop here because Ill just end up repeating myself, but as far as I can think of today. This is how I work, I guess.