So I’m entering a Prix de Rome competition and this is the letter I send. It’s connected to this idea.
I’m hereby entering the competition, giving me a fair chance of succeeding, the odds are better than the lottery my parent are participating in for more then 30 years. I’m even confident that I have something to offer to you that is of value (aware that I’m not alone in this, many people are yanking your chain).
But I’m a believer. A believer in the social role of Art. Art as the independent voice and messenger of new perspectives that did not exist or was ever conceived of. The artist fishing in the pond on the edges of our perception. Catching, studying and eventually preparing, eating and digesting. Giving society the opportunity to create an independent, objective self-image.
I myself was fishing in this pond, along with others for many years. Obsessively catching and studying but didn’t quite find the way to process it. There was always that conflict between the making and what should be made. My character doesn’t allow me to be truly free. One of the primary characteristics ( in my mind) to make art make itself.But my weakness is also my strong point. I now see myself as a creator of space and opportunities. Knowing the pond and it’s values. The people that are fishing and their reason why. Seeing the loads of possibilities to make them connect/interact more with present society. I have the ability to see all sides at ones and gently bring them closer together. Finding common ground to build upon.
This idea about myself is mostly theoretical. But from the end of October (the going “live” date is today) I’m interactively presenting me and my ideas and concepts in different phases of completion on publicworks.nl. Before this date my ideas were lost in the endless space called internet. It took me 7 years to find what I was looking after the academy. In 3 years I discovered my medium and the remaining 4 to get to know it and find out I’m a facilitator. Like all things it has a natural growth process of it own.
Seven innovating and exciting years for me. Worked at an artist initiative when I finished the academy in 1997, started my own (the snack-bar foundation) in 2000 together with an other artist. Moved house about 6 times and 3 times from studio. And two boys were born. Now working in Amsterdam a studio where I facilitate about 8 artist with internet access and share my 30 m2 studio with 3 others. Owning a co-located server where I host websites of the foundation and other artists. And exploring the opportunities of ideas.
My questions every day are how does art reach these people? An idea like a seed that has to find fertile ground to grow and prosper and trying to create an atmosphere that takes good care of it’s seeds and sees to it that it has the potential to survive. publicworks.nl is that atmosphere wanting to convince the world of it’s seeds richness and purpose.
A seed travels like the clouds it is not bound to the world is was conceived in. And in that sense it brings new input. More concrete and viewable by everybody.
As an artist I have to be susceptible to the clouds and their “never thought of concepts” and translate them to matter. But that’s not enough, you then have to incorporate it into a world that is overcome by a never ending and growing tidal wave of information. Most people are submersed in this non independent information and are losing their identity and autonomous thought. The arts is the reminder of that. Giving them the chance to swim again.
How does art reach these people?
My part lies in to facilitate, incorporate, collaborate. Believing bringing art into the world needs a team effort. Or better still a community. We need to build our own dreams and not only live those of others (big companies). And we need the right structure to make it happen.
Update: didn’t get it.0