Cringe, Cringe - 'I am an artist - it all just comes out and I work through my body and it's all just subjective' mmmmmm NO - unfortunately it's not just subjective, if you want to go beyond the coffee table that is.
If you are serious about finding your own unique visual voice and wish to impart some kind of meaning not only into your work, but, to also give the viewer something that they didn't have before they looked and engaged with your work - you will seriously need to connect with art history and in doing so, you will also need to take on the theory boys and girls, alleluia! Go theory girls I say.
One of the best challenges for the creative researcher, in my opinion, is to really take the might of theory on: CHALLENGE IT - SUBVERT IT - RIPP IT APART - and if you can - try and get your head around some of the over burdened rhetoric that is out there - if you research and really begin to understand your area of interest you will find the literature and will be drawn to a style that suits your needs.
In my area of interest ; Migration in Practice, Nikos Papastergiadis is one of my favourites. Not only is he a fab writer but his command of language and imparting his ideas through text is brilliant. There are many like him and I shall endeavor to share them with you as the blog progresses.
But, let's not forget the important role of theory - conversations - thinking through making - well, to do a grand job one must find a way of not illustrating a theoretical proposition, but, more importantly the creative practitioner will embody the theory and in doing so he/she will test and challenge it through a process of practice - easier said than done you are saying - IT CAN BE DONE -
A call to action is required dear researchers in the visual arts - yes we orbit a tried and tested tradition that is called a DISCIPLINE - we owe it to ourselves and our audience - and don't forget all the artists who have gone before us to Valhalla - we owe to art itself - its history needs contemporary practitioners to man up and do a good job - contribute - tell your story and that of others - after all its not rocket science. mmmm Maybe it is?