Friday, November 7, 2008

Is art an object or is it a process?

Continuing my exploration into So, why is this art? I will examine the sixth of the key points:
Is art an object or is it a process?
The Contemporary explores this question thusly:

Every work of art at some point is conceptualized and/or created. Artists, philosophers, critics, and curators have explored different ideas about the creative process and the actions of artists in creating artworks. This has led some artists to focus more on the activity of creating art, rather than on a resulting finished object... The artists may not know in advance the exact outcomes of their activity and chance occurrences or unpredictable events become an important part of their works.

For all that much of my background is in alternative media with an emphasis on performance art, which tends to be more process-based, I simply do not work best in this manner. I am too focused on the resulting artwork itself and on its ability to convey my ideas, much more than on how I created it. Some ideas are naturally more process-oriented than others, though, so I do work this way from time to time.

In past posts, I have spoken predominantly on the idea of the processes by which artworks are created as objects unto themselves and on the materials used and their significance. So until now, I have not focused on the idea of the process itself as art, which can be seen in interactive or reactionary performance and installation art or artworks that blur the boundaries between the visual arts and theater, music, dance, multimedia, etc. I am creating some such pieces as a part of my institutional critique works in that I cannot predict how audience members will react and respond. But, even in these pieces, there is a lot of preparation and presentation that goes into shaping and defining the experience. I just have too hard a time relinquishing control to be truly process-oriented.

1 comment:

ChaoticBlackSheep said...