Post-Unit-1 submission tutorial
with Jonathan Kearney
I’ve wanted to do the obligatory tutorial write-up for a while… but the reason it took me so long to get around to it is that I was a bit… overwhelmed.
I know validation shouldn’t be needed, and isn’t required for art to be art. But it is DEFINITELY motivating to hear encouraging words from the people whose opinion you value.
This year has been so tumultuous. Forget this year, it was 2008 when I found myself in an old university, bumping along in a rickety bus to reach it daily, forced to cross a bridge that passed right by the gorgeous terracotta building of the best medical school in Karachi I had been one of the 99 people to get admission to after a grueling interview and exam process. For reasons I refuse to reiterate (the past is best left in the past) I wasn’t allowed to go. Besides, what followed is more important. What followed was a rigorous, uphill journey past obstacles disguised as blessings, and emotional upheavals that were deemed inappropriate (or downright nonexistent) in my culture. So when I rekindled my love for art using old brushes and paints that I found lying around my house, while a very young Manahil and Rayyan slept on our lumpy brown couch, I was so so hesitant. Unsure. And when I decided to use this very same art to push through to some of the areas of Karachi where people dare not go, to help determined young women and children whose eyes shone with courage despite all their struggles, I was often left shaken, exhausted and doubly uncertain of what I was trying to achieve.
This tutorial was the first time in a long time that I felt encouraged. I felt like I was on cloud nine. I felt like I knew why I was doing what I was doing. I felt like exploration was a good thing, generosity was a great thing and striving was rewarding in itself.
When we were compiling our Unit 1 Assessment pages, I remember thinking to myself that the grade really really mattered to me (and it still does! A for the win 😀 <– high hopes here 😉 ) but honestly, the feedback I got during the tutorial and the courage it gave me were FAR more important.
Anyway, enough rambling in circles, here are the notes I made during the lecture; kind of short hand to help remind me exactly what we discussed:
Use books to make a sculpture?
Or just mirrors?
How will it interact?
If people remove pieces then it will be gone
The act of stillness… so interesting
Something like that…
- Looking to find places to display public art
- Looking for international collaboration opportunities
- Continue the untold edition
Scatters into a constellation!
Generosity calls for generosity
They give it on!!!! THE GIFT
Power beyond the individual and their art
Opening to yourself to engagement bigger and broader
And wanting to see that happen
Most people in the art world don’t think like that
Motivated by something difference, by making an impact
Changing situations, far richer than money
So much bigger and so much richer
Realism on the side. The attitude can be a base to our thoughts and work
Connecting in a rich way with these works
One of my greatest pleasures would have been to see these!
you’ll get to the end anyway
Karachi and what can be replicated
Don’t lose this, don’t let this course squash your Course. The power is about generosity
The beauty of it is that a lot of ppl do that, the balance between art and impact
The teacher understood that art was going to make a difference, incredible impact on the space
I would encourage you to do that
You’ll have SO MUCH to draw on
No requirement for you to come and install the show 😮
Resolved body of work presented professionally in a public exhibition setting
I will be sad if you don’t show the work
Creating the possibility of engaging in different spaces
Example: the bricks to London, it will BE very different
Take the element out of the practice, giving it a new behavior in a different setting
They’re different expressions of it
More resources to draw from
Straight away you’re playing with language and ideas of it
Very different flavors of it for the audience
There’s a richness and adaptability to it
Theasta Gate — took rubble and rubbish from abandoned houses woaah and sell them in expensive galleries to build libraries and houses
Wasteland — documentaries
people lose their impact and zeal, he hasn’t lost it! He’s maintained a radical edge to his work and plays the art world as well.
Social media influencer— opening up imaginative spaces to deal with life and brands etc
Reflecting deeply, improvise, taking on huge things
and with that I take a deep and happy breath and move on to, in the words of my teacher, huge things.