Monday, January 28, 2008

Ezra's interpretation of "Social Practice"

When I create art I am merely taking an object or experiencing and defining it as art.  What is the intention or power of that distinction?  Somehow the arting of anything invites people to attempt to react from a more mindful or aware perspective.  For example if I have a  jar of tea on my blue formica dining room table, which as I am writing this happens to be true, one wouldn't probably take special notice of this when coming into my house.  Even if one does take notice, it would be of the surface reality, (that there is a jar of tea on a blue formica dining room table.)  Now let me wave my magical art wand and organize a showing of this same phenomenon.  People then come in my house and start trying to understand the implications and meanings wrought within my morning beverage.  Some examples of these questions might be as follows: 
Why Formica?  What is the aesthetic value of blue as opposed to green?  What convention is being challenged by a beverage in a jar? 
These questions requires a subtler analysis of a once "common" phenomenon,  and subtlety is hard to come by in our society gross sensory experiences (times square, multi-media,etc.)
Art allows mundane things to be raised out of mundanity where they can take on much deeper meanings from being approached from a more holistic perspectives:  
How does this make me feel? What is the cultural relevance?  How do these things relate to each other and to everything else? the list goes on.
It is said that "humans are social animals."  If this is the case what practice of art would have the most impact on the most people?  Would it be an object created with nuances which can only be perceived by those who know about the technique and history of the object or is it something that is more universal.  I would think the latter.  From the time before we are born we are interacting with another human (our mommy,) and unless one manages to be a pure hermit (in which case they are not really relevant in this discussion,) one will continue to interact with society until they die.  Social Practice is merely empowering us to question our assumptions on our basic modes of interacting with each other with the possibility of greater understanding.   
By being forced to see our experiences from a another perspective than we do in our habitual ways of being one invariably becomes wiser.  Let us be art every moment and realize our power and infinite possibilities and throw off the shackles of our autopilot existence.

1 comment:

nicole said...

even though your first version accidentally got deleted and you claim this one isn't as eloquent, i must applaud your skill at communicating your ideas in a totally tangible way. yeah, ezra! i appreciate you doing the homework that we all forgot about.