bryan_wizemann

The Surrogate Graduate Project

Developed to achieve a very common desire, to allow an individual to be in two places at once. Above is the final interview of the surrogate Andrew Wingert about the project.

The work of art may thus consist of a formal arrangement that generates relationships between people, or be born of a social process; I have described this phenomenon as 'relational aesthetics,' whose main feature is to consider interhuman exchange an aesthetic object in and of itself.
Nicolas Bourriaud, Post Production

The Proposal (posted on Craigslist)

As I have enjoyed my time attending Hunter's graduate program in fine arts, my time it seems is becoming too limited to continue tophysically be a part of the program. The film work that I am pursuing is becoming increasingly time consuming, and is further not a viable means of production to fold into the program. My surrogate will make it easier for me to gain the credits I require for the master's degree, and gain the experience of attending a competitive and respected MFA program in New York.

I am offering to my surrogate free use of my large, shared studio space at Hunter College's times square studio building, and free attendance of the two classes of which I am currently enrolled. The surrogate will be able to make and submit his or her own work, work collaboratively with me on various projects, engage in critiques and discussions, complete given assignments, and participate as me within the Hunter MFA program. Again, this is offered at no cost to you, though there are some necessary things that I will require of my surrogate:

Others will refer to you asBryan Wizemann, or simplyBryan, while you attend Hunter on my behalf. You will be given various T-shirts each week to assist others in learning how to interact with you as my surrogate. I shall be referred to only as your host during the life of the project. The surrogate will further have to email me a brief synopsis of what was covered in each class each week, and discuss your experiences at various meetings throughout the semester. The surrogate must also be willing to be photographed for project documentation, and occasionally wear a wire or other such recording device. The surrogate will not gain actual credit for the classes I am enrolled in, but will gain the experience of attending such classes. If the surrogate is unable to attend a particular class due to illness or emergency, I should be able to attend in your absence with little or no ensuing confusion

What you should expect to receive as my surrogate

  • Free use of large (shared) studio space in the Hunter MFA times square building.
  • Free attendance of the two classes I am currently enrolled in:

    Photography Projects 751.53 with Reiner Leist

    [meets Mondays from 4 - 6:40pm with a lab on Mondays from
    12-4pm]

    Philosophical Aesthetics 780.47 with Stephen Ross

    [meets Thursdays from 4-6:40pm, with the required text The Philosophy of Art: Readings Ancient and Modern, by Alex Neill, Aaron Ridley (I will provide this text)]

  • The full experience of working and studying as a Hunter MFA candidate, and the partial experience of being someone else doing so.
  • The right to list oneself as “collaborative surrogate for this project on a resume or CV.

What is required of my surrogate

  • Applicant must hold a Bachelor's Degree.
  • Applicant must be a qualified candidate for an MFA program in fine arts, but not currently hold a Master's Degree.
  • Applicant needs to be able to show current work, preferably in some sort of online portfolio.
  • Applicant must provide a brief defense of why they would be a good surrogate for my presence at Hunter in their online application.
  • Applicant must agree to fulfill the various terms set forth in the about this project section, and be committed to the project for the entire spring semester.
    (I further can not be held responsible if this project is terminated early by forces outside of my control).

studio
Andrew's own shot of himself in my studio.
one
Andrew in my studio at Hunter.
two
Andrew in my photo class, a lecture on Photographers.
three
Andrew in same photo class above.
four
Andrew in my studio again, making a phone call. The photo above him is of my wife sleeping.
The Project Itself
Below is the text documentation of the various emails and correspondences I (host) and Andrew (my surrogate) are engaging in in an attempt to realize some sort of surrogate relationship: basically to see if he can go to school for me and if I can still get something out of it.

First Host Request 1/28/05

Hey Andrew,
Great meeting up the other day, I'm actually excited and can't quite believe this all might come together.

So I'm going to start forwarding emails like this from class, though I don't think they'll be many. As you can see Reiner Leist like to schedule outside stuff, and again if it's something you can't make I should be able to fill it (but you should try to go).

Also, I think the best way to rectify the studio building is to just get you a Hunter ID card with my name and your picture. I'm sure we can do this easily if I just give you my social and some other non-photo documents/credit cards etc. Maybe we can try this sometime Monday during the day back at 68th st. Let me know if this works for you, we might also be able to try it Thursday before your Philosophy class.

Don't forget to send me a pic, brief bio, and why you singed up.

Take care,

Surrogate Email 2/03/05
(this is Andrew's bio andreasons for signing up email I asked him to write for the website)

I'm writing in response to the Surrogate Graduate Project/ application. I meet the qualifications in that I received my BFA studying art from the University of Cincinnati (DAAP), but mainly because of financial constraints, I haven't been able to even think about going to grad school. I'm more interested in continuing my art education than receiving a formal degree.

I have a modest collection of paintings online at www.artilectual.com (Andrew Wingert). I'm not sure what sort of artist you're looking for, but I think that my sincerity, (what I believe to be an important attribute of any art/ artist) is evident when you see the artwork. The paintings address universality, divisibility, morphology, extropy-evolutionary themes from a mainly formalist perspective. I was well respected as an undergrad. student and I think the same would apply at Hunter.

Initially, I was attracted to the project for the opportunity to have a studio space. As I read more about your intentions, I was a little unclear about how it would actually work. I have a lot of questions- mainly since the project involves identity and interchangeable ones at that, I wonder what sort of legal problems could arise- basically who would be held responsible if anything should happen. I'm definitely interested enough to hear the details of the project. I look forward to hearing from you.

Andrew Wingert

Host Reply 2/03/05
Andrew and I had met in person a second time at this point and were both excited about the possibility of trying to pull this thing off, I as lo agreed that I would sign any contract he had in mind so he didn't have to worry about getting arrested if the heat came down on this somehow. I think he's a good candidate in that he is qualified for an MFA program but can't really afford it right now, and I like his art (basically most applicants I had that I told no to were because their art was hard to take, and I didn't want to be represented by what I thought was just bad art. This went against my initial belief that I would take just about anyone).

In preparation for the switch, I went to the first class of both classes to softly introduce the project. I got Andrew the Philosophy book he needed (I have one as well and will follow along) and today I'm going to try to get him an ID with his photo and my name so he can get into the Studio Building easier. We'll see.

Host Update 02/04/05

So we chickened out about getting the fake ID. We figured just giving him my ID would get him into the studio building with no real issues. Andrew has his first class today, and we met beforehand so I could give him my studio key, cards that told people about the project and this site, slides of my work to present in the photo class on Monday, and the photo class syllabus. I'm excited to see if it all works out, and hope he doesn't just get thrown out right away.

Surrogate First Philosophy Class Report 02/04/05

I was a little nervous at the start of class- Prof.Ross read off the names of everybody in the class- I just sort of raised my hand when Bryan Wizemann was called. At the break, I decided to explain myself a little bit to the professor. I told him that I was a surrogate and gave him the card, he said that he wanted to discuss it further during his office hours. He seemed really interested, maybe a bit uneasy about our arrangement in regards to the final paper. He was firm in saying that the final paper had to deal with the readings and subjects discussed in the course- as long as we do that- it'll work out fine. I noticed that once I told him that I was a surrogate student, he paid a bit more attention to my presence in the class.

A couple of girls you told about the project approached me, asking if I was the new Bryan Wizemann- they were into it- like why didn't I think of that? - i gave them the cards too.

The class/material itself was pretty heavy. The professor is very good, I think the class requires some serious attention and dedication- I'll probably have to read each text a few times before the next class. So, since we're going to have to write the paper on the material from the book, I guess I should tell you about what we talked about today. I could be wrong about everything, but here's what I got out of it:

We started off reviewing the Tolstoy essay from What is Art- the main discussion with his theory was the problem of instrumentalism and therefore autonomy. He is saying that the art object is a means (or an
instrument) of conveying something from creator to the viewer- expressing a certain psychological state or idea. Is this even necessary in art? This leads to the idea that if something besides art could convey these psych. states or ideas from one to another- then that would question the need or purpose for art. What are the intentions for the art?

Then we talked about the Collingwood article fromThe Principles of Art He attempts to differentiate art between craft- crucial to the definition of art is its difference between craft- what art is not. He says that art expresses emotion (something) in a completely unique way which has no counterpart elsewhere. This is in contrast to Tolstoy's view that whatever is conveyed by means of art could be conveyed by other means as well- this already takes care of Tolstoy's problem of instrumentalism.

His main premise was that the art is the mental object existing in the artists mind and that the physical art object is a means by which we can reach that mental object (residue or trace of the mental activity). Then there's the question of whether or not the mental object is entirely created and then the physical art object follows or both the physical and mental object evolve together. The difference between the artist and the non-artist is that the artist chooses to construct the physical object.

Art vs Craft- he says that they demand exclusive contrasts in that if one as a certain attribute, then the other must not have that attribute. Problems were that he says craft is a means to a preset end, which can also be obviously true about certain art. He says that technique is related to craft- that you couldn't say that a painting or whatever is great because of the technique and skill displayed- what else is left? An intrinsic artiness about the object? Discount mechanisms of arousal as well. Translating the mental object to the physical- Why should you have difficulty producing what is already a fully formed mental object? He related this process to a coloring book where each section is labeled with a certain number, or color where you simply fill it to get the final picture.

So,
1. Work of art as a mental object.
2. Expression- highly individuated character/value
3. Art/ Craft distinction: preset end vs. non-preset end concern for technique for arousal or not

Finally, I thought the most interesting part is the idea that if a certain attribute of the physical art object is particularly beautiful/ unique/ enhancing. etc. and you cannot imagine it without that attribute (like a certain medium for example) then it does something that the mental object does not. I think that this is the hole in collingwood's argument. His example was Michelangelo's David, the fact that its in marble is certainly a quality which enhances the object, but being that its in marble can't be a part of the mental object. This is why conceptual/ found/ready-maid art works well with Collingwood's argument because they directly guide you to the mental object-Duchamp's snow-shovel could easily be replaced by a different snow shovel and the art object/ idea would not change- it still leads to the same mental object. If Michelangelo's David was made in plaster- it would be completely different.

Whew- at least that's what I got out of it. We're supposed to read an essay by Beardsley for the next class. I'm going to meet with the professor before the next class. Talk to you soon.

Andrew Wingert

Host Reply 2/04/05
This is wonderful Andrew, thank you.

Surrogate First Photo Class Report 02/07/05 The photo class was much more of an experience- I didn't know that the project proposal was due and that it was the topic of discussion for the class. I explained your work and my work very briefly, but mainly talked about our project. Prof. Leist mentioned that the surrogate student had been done before-so I think he's waiting to see if we can take it a different direction.

The class was definitely interested- I acted as a living slide- an example of your work. I said that they could call me Andrew or Bryan- I never lied. Thankfully, Leist is not messing around, so I'm going to make sure that my (our) project reflects the overall project at hand. I'm not sure right now what the best approach is- thinking about your art and mine and how I (we) could maximize this experience.

I had until midnight to e-mail the proposal, but it didn't get there until about 12:30, so I hope that's not going to end anything- he wasn't very forgiving though- nor should he be. There is a fee for the class that we'll have to figure out. Do you have any questions for me? Ideas for a photo project?

The entire time I was in that class, I could not picture you being there. It just didn't make any sense to me, what would have happened if you were there instead of me? Talk to you soon.

Andrew- Surrogate

Host Reply 2/08/05
Hey Andrew, I emailed the prof to see what the other project was so I can maybe learn from it. This sucks because I thought I did a search online to see if anything like that was out there, and came up with nothing.

I also told him that the Surrogate thing WAS my proposal, as far as yours goes I thought they would co-exist somehow. Shit.

Take care,

Host email to Professor Leist 2/08/05
Dear Professor Leist, Andrew had mentioned that you knew of another project very similar to the one I am proposing for this class. I tried to research similar artwork, but couldn't find anything online. Could you point me in the right direction?

As for the photo project proposal, the surrogate graduate was my proposal, the information contained within the website and its ongoing documentation. Sorry if that wasn't clear. It will eventually involve photography.

Take care,

Surrogate Photo Class Proposal 02/07/05
Professor Leist, This semester, I plan to be using photography as an instrument to highlight the surrogate graduate project between myself and Bryan Wizemann. I will examine ideas of identity, interpersonal exchange, ownership, authorship, relationships, and comfort ability- recording my experiences of the project as they happen- keeping in mind what I have to offer as a surrogate student and what Bryan Wizemann has to offer as an artist and a student at Hunter. There are a lot of different ways that this could go, and since this experience is unique to Bryan and me; I would like for the photo project to reflect that, sincerely. I'll think about Bryan's artwork and how it relates to my own; as well as how to truly emphasize our roles in this particular type of collaboration. This is extremely new to me, so I'm excited to see what happens. Thanks. Bryan Wizemann- Andrew Wingert

Professor Reiner Leist's Response to Host email 02/09/05
I was referring to Maurizio Cattelan, an Italian artist who has frequently used a surrogate for himself in his public appearances. One that I experienced was a lecture at the New School (part of the lecture series organized by the public art fund), but the person he hired for that has repeatedly given interviews etc. on his behalf. http://www.eyestorm.com/artist/Maurizio_Cattelan.aspx

Your film is good. Reiner Leist

Host Response to Professor Leist 2/09/05
Oh great, I know Maurizio's work. I was actually softly going to be part of Apex Art's upcoming lecture series this Saturday that's being put together by Harrell Fletcher that's part of Maurizio Couldn't Be Here, but had to bow out.

Thanks for the feedback on the film, it's going to be a hard sell.

Here is the info on that: http://www.apexart.org/exhibitions/maurizio.htm

5 Saturdays of Performance-related Events

Each Saturday from Feb 12 to Mar 12, apexart will feature a performance-related activity: an all day line-up of special guest speakers, premieres of TV ads of contemporary artists, bands collaborating with video artists, a traditional Afghan-food tasting performance, and other surprises. Following each Saturday event the gallery will be open Tuesday to Friday 11-6 with video documentation of the event or the featured work on view.

Surrogate Class Report 02/14/05
This last philosophy class made we wonder if I would have been accepted to Hunter had I applied. The class is pretty into it- probably because its mostly philosophy majors. They were asking artists in the class to explain the basics of conceptual art--must be interesting to read art theories and not know something as fundamental as Duchamp.

We talked about the Beardsley essay, The Intentional Fallacy-My notes this time around weren't as detailed- mostly because we spent the majority of the time pointing out exceptions and holes in his theory. I'm looking at my notes right now trying to make any sort of sense out of it, again- I could be way off on this:

The intentional fallacy misdirects intention of criticism to the wrong object- if an exact replica of an artwork was created, it would still be the same artwork; therefore, intention must be irrelevant. Intentions are the cause of the artwork- and the works have meaning aside from their intentions. platitudinous works of art? wonder why I wrote that down. Suppose a group of monkeys randomly happen to produce a Shakespeare play- the properties of the art would remain the same. Art bears properties aside from the causal properties by which it was formed - mid air position. We touched on objective and constructed properties- constructed properties exist because of constructed understandings previously created (money, marriage, etc.) Properties like tragic and funny are also constructed properties (accomplishment properties)- -- Art is constructed therefore it gives way to constructed properties- they only come about through intentionally constructed means based on historic understanding. I'd be happy if that made any sense at all.

The photo class gets better and better. I think I'm starting to notice a little bit of resentment from a few of the students- the reasons might be that I didn't pay for the class or that I don't have as much of an obligation as they do- I'm not really sure what it is, maybe they wouldn't have liked me either way. Anyways, I felt better when you came in to take pictures of me, it sort of validated my presence in the class- a process that was really happening- that wasn't separated from our lives and put into the category of art. I did my best to stay natural, which meant just sitting there.

Prof. Leist ran through about fifty different photographers, just to give us some ideas- and to remind us that none of our ideas will be new. I'm getting comfortable painting in the studio too- I finished a study that I'm pleased with. Let me know if you have any other ideas for the photo project- I signed up to work in the lab this coming Monday, but I could reschedule it. Talk to you soon. Andrew

Host Reply 2/15/05
Thanks man, great as always. One idea for the paper for Phil might be that I comment on a draft by you, adding my own thoughts in italics or something. I don't know. Sorry if some photo folks are giving you trouble, I'm sure they don't want to be there and don't want to reward me/you for getting away with not being there/not taking it seriously. The joke is that you are taking it seriously, so no problem I think. Let me know if you need my camera for anything. The pics I took came out okay, I had the frickin' camera on Manual though and didn't realize it, so they're a little fuzzy.

If you want to meet sometime and discuss an article or something let me know and I'll gladly read it and meet you somewhere to talk it through. Take care,

Surrogate Philosophy Class Report 02/17/05
If only you could have seen what happened in the philosophy class today. Prof. Ross goes through the attendance each class and I've been raising my hand for Bryan and Andrew. Today he took notice to that and announced that there was some conceptual art going on right under our noses. (This came as sort of a side note to a handout on conceptual art he passed out as we were walking into class). He asked that I stand up and explain myself to the class. I said the basics of the project, the surrogacy and all that- Prof. Ross was very supportive of your artistic intentions- it was really nice actually. The reaction from the class was great- I think I heardWhere do I sign up? As I sat down, a student told me that people were using surrogates at her undergrad. school in San Francisco four years ago- I think she just wanted to bring me down a little bit.

Anyway, after class, a girl named Jen approached me wanting to talk about the project a little bit more. She's a writer/ journalist, so she scribbled down a few notes while I was talking- She wanted to know if it had gotten any press yet. She was cool and sincere, a friend of the professor- so she was just sitting in on the class- I gave her a card and we said that we'd talk about it some more in the future. She might even be contacting you. Just thought I'd let you know. See you soon.

Andrew

Host Email to Professor Ross 2/17/05
Dear Professor Ross,

I received a welcome report from my surrogate regarding today's Philosophy class, which I've included below. If Andrew hasn't directed you to the project's website yet, you can find it at http://www.surrogategraduate.com. One thing I've discovered about the project is that because I don't have to physically be in class each week, I've fallen a bit behind on the readings (but plan to catch up soon). Andrew's final paper will also reflect the collaboration to some degree.

I just wanted to share my appreciation at your open mindedness about our collaboration. The study of Philosophy is very dear to me, it was my major at Cornell where Alan Wood served as my advisor, and it influences the work I tend to pursue. Please let me know if you have any questions as the project progresses, or if I can help in any way.

Regards,

Response from Professor Ross 2/17/05
It WAS lively, that is for sure! Why not drop in, or at least in my office hours, some time? You are something of a shadow celebrity now. Hope to see you one of these days, and thanks for those remarks about the class and about philosophy.

Best SR

Surrogate Philosophy Class Report 02/24/05
Today was the best phil. class so far--finally getting into some more interesting material like Barthes and Bell. We discussed the author-god which got the class pretty wound up. Since Prof. Ross sent those handouts on Barthes. we moved to Bell's anti-retrieval formalist aesthetic theory- talking about significant form generating aesthetic emotion and how they are circularly defined by one another.

We went over Wittgenstein's art and family resemblance argument- crisscrossing, overlapping strands of connection--I'd actually never heard of him before tonight's class.

About the photo class- this coming monday, Feb. 28 we're going to the offices of The New Yorker- Elisabeth Biondi, the Visuals Editor is going to give us a lecture/presentation. That following Monday, March 7 is the class review/ comparative student talks. I like your idea about the Polaroid too, we'll see how the stone- faced class reacts- or doesn't react for that matter. If you don't want to show up for the class review, I'll have some stuff ready- I'm not sure how much you thought you would have to participate this quarter--Either way- good seeing you today. I had a feeling that I might see you there. I attached a photo of the studio- Jesus at the mailbox is always lit up when I'm working- I was studying a painting by Kuo Hsi Early Spring on my laptop. Talk to you soon. Andrew

So we went to the office of the New Yorker on Monday and learned a little bit about the artistic direction from the visuals editor, Elisabeth Biondi. She briefly went over the history of the magazine- explaining the New yorker's relationship with photography- (quality over quantity)- the photo's are used mainly as a way to draw the reader into the article. One of the photographers for the magazine,Martin Schoeller, came in and talked for a little while about working for the magazine. He was actually pretty cool, even after working with some of the most important/ powerful people in the world. (In the March issue, he has a very confrontational, big head Avadon-esque portrait of Dan Rather). Ultimately, the lesson learned was that everything is a business and that money runs the show- It was an interesting evening though- I remember Martin saying that it was most difficult to shoot boring looking people or people with boring lives- made me think about who that might be. Surrogate Philosophy Class Report 03/03/05 Today we discussed Dickie's article, The New Institutional Theory of Art. From my understanding, he attempts to differentiate the ordinary art object from the art object- even if they are physically the same object (i.e Duchamp's urinal, snow- shovel). Dickie's main point is that something is art because it has been accepted/ claimed to be art by some art institution or the artworld- conferral of art status. The problem seems to be identifying the artworld. This argument seems to run in a circle- that things are art by nature that their art status has been confirmed- this institutionalist view has problems with outsider/ primitive art- those people making artifacts objects with no idea of art/ art history. The most glaring problem in his argument is that the concept of art is understood with no connection with evaluation- is it art? is it good art? In Dickie's view, you could arrive at the point where you have evaluated a work of art as being good art, while you haven't even answered the question of whether it is even art or not- Separation between evaluative and conferral story.

Danto, The Artworld Prof. Ross started by explaining Danto's interest in Hegel. Hegel's main point: what is x/ what is the history of x? The subject of art is informed through its historical story. Art was subjected to an internal causal dynamic/ exploration. Each period attempts to resolve/ work through the limitations of the previous period, exploring its own nature in the process. The history of art is exploring what art can be (defining its limits and then expanding them). Hegel, as well as Danto, say that this exploration will come to an end (or already has)- there is no further historical story to tell- no new developments because the exploration has reached complete self- consciousness. Now we will see more examples (of art), but the historical story has ended.

So Danto and his point on the self- conscious exploration into art defines the Imitation Theory and the Real Thing- art being real in its own right, not tied to some memetic relation to the outside world. Danto sees Pop Art, Warhol's Brillo Box, when the everyday object was fused with the art object, as being that historical end-- That's where we ended. Of course the artists in the class were trying to defend the current progress of art today. I've always enjoyed Danto's idea- I saw him give a lecture a few years back in Cincinnati about Beauty. He talked about a Robert Motherwell painting for two hours, everybody was bored to death.

Anyway, I'll stop by Sunday night to pick up the photo project- I've been reworking my idea- I was thinking that if you addressed absence and wereness, mine might address presence and thereness- something like that. Did you get the email from the TA about the critiques in April? I'm not sure if you would want to apply for that or not. Anyways, enjoy the weekend, talk to you soon.

Andrew

Surrogate Class Report 03/15/05
I'm not sure if you're back from your trip yet- hope it went well. So what I thought was the midterm last week wasn't, but I got tricked into showing our stuff anyways. It didn't go very well. The class thought that we weren't documenting the situation effectively- they wondered why you decided to frame the pictures. They didn't really understand what was going on- it was pretty entertaining. It actually got fairly ugly- someone said that the photos made him want to puke. I think they just don't like the idea of the surrogate-one girl said, why don't I just have a surrogate come to class for me and I just said go for it. It was funny because all of their hateful comments were just bouncing right off of me and I think that added fuel to the fire- that I didn't really care. The only support came from your one friend and a guest student from Berlin who said it was genius from an outsider's perspective. They were the only ones that had a sense of humor I guess. So the real midterm is this coming Monday- I didn't show the website photos so I'll do that and I'm working on something else as well. Somebody asked me if I was alright after the crit was over. Basically they said that the project won't be able to last for the whole quarter and my response was that it will simply because I'm going to keep showing up.

Yesterday for the photo class we did photographer presentations- I didn't get a whole lot out of it. I did mine on Terry Richardson and Hiromix. I'm starting to think about the position that Reiner is and how he feels about the whole thing since the pass/ fail is up to him. So, we should thing about how we'll wrap this up eventually or what we can do from here since I'm going to face the angry mob again this coming Monday. Hope all is well. Talk to you soon. Andrew

Surrogate Email 4/06/05
I knew that I'd eventually get lazy about the emails- sorry about that. It might be because I've gotten used to going to Hunter so I don't feel like a surrogate as much as I used to. Our photo class went to the photography conservation lab at the Met the other day- it was actually pretty interesting- I was wondering if you were planning on attending the open studio on Friday- maybe I could walk around with the surrogate shirt on or something. Talk to you soon.

Surrogate Photo Class Report 04/11/05
Instead of showing work today, we had a really interesting discussion about art, photography, and everything else. I'm beginning to get self- conscious about what I write in this e-mails knowing that they will be put on the internet. I say this because Reiner made reference to my summary of our visit to the New Yorker office. I just re-read it and I'm not sure if I understand what he found objectionable. I really hope that my presence is not disrespectful in anyway towards Prof. Leist- that's the last thing I would want to happen considering how much I respect him.

With that of the way, I took some notes during our discussion- here are some of the topics of discussion: the role of photography, the justification of the medium- (the justification of making any art), physiology of perception- trained to perceive things in a certain way- the purity of photography as a representation of perception- responding to signals based on what we bring to the work- cerebral representation- Reiner talked about the difference between setting out to make a work of art compared to investigating/ researching ideas- functions of art- the age of benign pluralism- (rampant individualism)- the idea of selection and those in positions of power (in art) galleries, curators, etc., standardization (in terms of the art community)- critical assessment vs personal preference- artwork having conceptual depth, technical capacity, how does the concept and execution come together?- connoisseurship- monetary value of artwork- selling out- mass production vs the unique art object- art market- gaining- information society- do you reflect the culture or does the culture reflect you?- investigation of ideas- advertising vs art- the purpose of art school (reasons for going)- chances of becoming a professional artist- belief in what you're doing (the case with anything, not just art)

I got a lot out of the discussion- beginning to have a strange feeling of guilt about this project- I'm not sure why- Anyways- I did have the shirt on you made which Prof. Leist said he liked. It was good seeing you on Friday- Talk to you soon.

Andrew

Host Reply 4/12/05
Hey Andrew,

I think getting self-conscious and self-aware of how your presence is affecting those around you is an interesting part of the project. That doesn't mean however that I don't think your role is a difficult one, I think it is, but try to hang in there (remember I can always sub in for you if you need a break). I also couldn't find much objectionable about your New Yorker summary, (I'm more amazed the Reiner is reading the summaries), and I wouldn't worry too much about it. Art as commerce always comes up, especially with photography, especially given fine art photography constantly needs to be wrestled away from its mass use in fashion, advertising, familiar/tourist documentation, porn, commercial television and film, etc. Even the fine art stuff has problems in my opinion, as it often seems more appropriate for a calendar than a differentiated space (see the nomadic museum of Gregory Colbert, or Anne Geddes babies, especially the ones featuring Celine Dion). Even Salgado, with his lush shots of third world poverty/enslavement, seem a common aestheticization of poverty rather than any real examination of it.

Thanks for wearing the shirt, let me know when you get a chance to show the written up painting or the other stuff. And let's talk more about the wire tap and the final, I think I'll try to video tape it or something.

Take care,


     

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