April 2013 Archives

Christina Schmid

| 1 Comment

This lecture was extremely intense and Christina was so passionate. I have only have few interactions with Christina and found it interesting that many other students had no idea what her role was in the Art Department.

It was refreshing to have her explain that she did not aim to attack artist or their work but allowed a conversation to begin with the artist, writer and the audience. The work she does can allow people to see other perceived and also her work can tell the artist the images, feeling or concepts they achieved with the viewers.

I had only known that she was a writer and had not taking the time to learn more about her work. I think many of us have done this; we could have asked her at any moment to explain her work. With the amount of passion she spoke with it sparked an interest for me to research her work more and I did go to the Quolibetica. I recommend that everyone take the time to visit the page the link is below.

Link to site: http://www.quodlibetica.com/author/cschmid/

Penelope Umbrico

| No Comments

As I looked at Penelope Umbrico's website before her lecture, I found myself drawn in. I saw in her work her search for commonality, for unique phenomena that most take for granted, and I was excited to see her speak. She certainly did not disappoint, elaborating on her work while keeping a great atmosphere with the audience and speaking with passion. But as she spoke, I realized that what intrigued me most about her work was the absolute fascination and focus with which she approaches her subjects. Near the end of the lecture, she referred to herself as someone who works in photography and works with it, and yet would not call herself a photographer. I've recently become intrigued by the New Aesthetic movement, which deals with the ramifications of the digital world into the physical. Listening to Umbrico speak, I could not help but see her work as a study of just that, and I found it highly relevant.

Penelope Umbrico

| 1 Comment

Although I found the concepts behind Penelope's works to be quite interesting, I do not have a love affair with her work as many others seem to have. I'm really interested in art on the internet, art about the internet, and new forms of media that express this. I find Penelope's work to be visually interesting, but to me, she seems somewhat unaware of art that is happening on the internet. The fact that she prints off these photographs and collages them into a giant work that she shows in a gallery, to me somewhat misses the point of the work. I guess she is trying to question "what we consider art" and what we can make out of other pieces of visual information. The final work of what she has created is somewhat visually interesting, especially in terms of it's scale, but it does not excite me as much as some of the art I see online, or in an artist who heavily stimulates like Ryan Trecartin. I think her ideas are good, but if I was on Tumblr (where people post a lot of original, novel art) and I was scrolling, I would probably scroll right past the image of her "Sunsets" piece because it doesn't capture my attention that much. What I "did" like about her work was the meta photographs of people in front of her work, photographs of photographs of people in front of her work, etc.

My main point is that I wish artists would question the idea of showing their work in public spaces more, and to expand their concepts of public spaces. That is to say, is it really worth it to showcase a two-dimensional object in a physical space? Are physical spaces really even that relevant anymore or are we hanging on to this concept because that is how things had to be done in the past? Or is a work like that more appropriate to show in other contexts? I know she also mentioned that she is creating an e-book, but to me, even that seems somewhat of an outmoded concept. A blog would be more appropriate. An e-book is trying to take a concept that exists in the physical work and translate it to the digital world, not keeping in mind the digital context. I realize by attending "gallery talks", I am automatically setting myself up to be somewhat disappointed, as this kind of art has never piqued my interest as much as what is going on in edgier arenas like the internet, or even places like MoMA PS1, which really understands that art taking place in a physical space should have a more three-dimensional quality, and that the most interesting art right now is taking place outside of the gallery.

Visiting Artists Lecture #7 - Penelope Umbrico

| 1 Comment

Visiting Artists Lecture #7 - Penelope Umbrico

Bailey Haack
18 April 2013

Before Penelope Umbrico's talk, I had looked up a few of her images online. I was excited because I had been accepted into her workshop and didn't know a lot about her work, so I wanted to hear her describe her practice in more detail. I enjoyed the format of her talk. It seemed casual and comfortable, like she had planned what she wanted to talk about but wasn't following a script. I enjoyed that she showed a lot of pictures throughout her talk to illustrate what she was discussing. However, I kept finding myself returning to a sense of discomfort with her work, and I couldn't figure out why that was. I decided that I really like the idea of her work, and how she is making a statement about how we as a culture make and share photos. However, I think my discomfort stemmed from her process in creating what she creates. In his introduction, Paul Shambroom noted that hers is a process of "collecting images and creating context," and Penelope said that "the subject of my work is photography." I think I had a problem with this because she seems to sell herself as a photographer, when really she is more of a curator or a collector of images, not a creator. I enjoyed her work and her talk, and especially her descriptions of the stories she's telling within her pieces. I just think that she should give more credit to the people creating the images, because they're the ones coming up with the actual imagery in much of her work.

Penelope Umbrico at Influx

| No Comments

Last week, I was anxious not only to start the workshop with Penelope but to listen to her talk at the influx. I was not really aware of Penelope and her work until I applied to be in the workshop. I began looking at her work through the internet screen.... still not aware of just what exactly it was. Her talk was more like a conversation, not too planned, but natural. Hearing about her work was interesting because I have never worked in that way, searching images and appropriating. I liked that she read the reviews on her work and thought that they were comical, but also had thought that maybe her work wasn't really ethical and later found out differently. She also explained the difference of viewing on screens vs. tangible objects, which is a theme in her work. I liked that she talked about technology always changing and how that might affect her "Suns" piece because she initially made the prints on a 1 hour photo lab and how the machine is in a way important to the piece. Also the thought of the 1 hour photo labs being not available might cause problems for the museum that bought the collection permanently. Overall the talk was very interesting to me because I had not ever even thought about working like this, one of my favorite pieces that Penelope has done is her recent work with Mountains, and the work is currently at Bethel. She was inspired by old photos of mountains by a dentist named Dr. George C. Poundstone and filters of an iphone photo app.

Penelope Umbrico

| 2 Comments

I found Penelope Umbrico's work to be very novel. What she did with her collages, though it must have taken a very long time, is very simple work. And though the collage of suns is very beautiful, the reaction to it is what I found the most fascinating. She created a work of art out of a collective understanding of beauty. Her work then was added to this collection and copied and shared, and re-shared, and changed and copied and shared again. This discovery of the way people interact with art should not have been as surprising to me as it was. It caught me off guard to be presented with a new way of looking at how people use the internet. Umbrico's work seemed in some ways to be good-naturedly mocking it, while in other ways praising and participating in it.
What I refer to when I say mocking is of course her collections of the awkward reflections in the craig's list photos. Umbrico seem to very much enjoy her work. And understandably. She must go into these projects having only an idea about what she is looking for but no idea what she will find. Her work with collages is almost something I would classify as a study of humans. And her attitude about it is so light hearted. I could not help but think again about Molzan and Olson's opinion about having their work copied and shared digitally. I was constantly comparing their thoughts with Umbrico's reaction to the digital copies of her art. Though the two cannot really be compared, as Umbrico's work IS digital copies of art.

Erin Persons

Penelope Umbrico

| 2 Comments

I seemed to have a really hard time initially connecting to Penelope and her work. The suns were pretty and interesting but I felt like I lost interest quickly. Maybe it's my lack of experience with critiquing and analyzing the work different artists do, but I felt as if she could have done more with her work. It would have been so much more interesting if she had taken the time to go out and take some pictures for herself or if she actually travelled to amazing places to get beautiful pictures of sunsets rather than sitting on a computer looking them up. I don't find that very inspiring. The lines of information she is following (such as the amount of sunset pictures on flickr) are interesting to an extent. I don't think this is something that I would continually follow and track. Things like this are the normal now. I could just be really desensitized to how accessible information is steadily becoming but since sharing information is so easy and common, I don't think it was worth her time to put effort into tracking how many sunset pictures there are on flickr. She also spoke of old television sets and one hour photo booths and I felt the same way about this information as I did about the sunset collection.
Penelope gave a really good and clear talk and I do respect her as a person but for some reason I was just not inspired by her work. Maybe I am being too closed minded or I'm being too critical but I feel like so much more could be done on her part to actually go out and get pictures for herself rather than having to face the critique of "stealing" other people's photos.
I seemed to have a really hard time initially connecting to Penelope and her work. The suns were pretty and interesting but I felt like I lost interest quickly. Maybe it's my lack of experience with critiquing and analyzing the work different artists do, but I felt as if she could have done more with her work. It would have been so much more interesting if she had taken the time to go out and take some pictures for herself or if she actually travelled to amazing places to get beautiful pictures of sunsets rather than sitting on a computer looking them up. I don't find that very inspiring. The lines of information she is following (such as the amount of sunset pictures on flickr) are interesting to an extent. I don't think this is something that I would continually follow and track. Things like this are the normal now. I could just be really desensitized to how accessible information is steadily becoming but since sharing information is so easy and common, I don't think it was worth her time to put effort into tracking how many sunset pictures there are on flickr. She also spoke of old television sets and one hour photo booths and I felt the same way about this information as I did about the sunset collection.

Penelope gave a really good and clear talk and I do respect her as a person but for some reason I was just not inspired by her work. Maybe I am being too closed minded or I'm being too critical but I feel like so much more could be done on her part to actually go out and get pictures for herself rather than having to face the critique of "stealing" other people's photos.

Penelope Umbrico

| 1 Comment

I thought that Penelope Umbrico's lecture was quite enlightening. Her work with collage was very interesting. I had no idea that someone could make art out of photos pulled from places like Flickr or Craig's List. One important point was how few of her pictures she actually took herself. Obviously, she is a talented artist and photographer, but I thought it was interesting that she spent most of her time on her collages sorting through Internet photos to find perfect fits. I thought that this was mainly instructive because I feel that most artists have a kind of immediate aversion to using the work of others. Whether or not it is justified, most artists that I know want to do all of their own work and create something that belongs to them completely. Umbrico took a much more collaborative approach, by using photos that others had taken with no intention of them being used in a larger piece of art.

The other point raised by the lecture for me was the issue of ownership and art. Umbrico seemed to "steal" photos off the Internet willy-nilly, certainly never pausing to ask for permission from the original photographers. Although I appreciated the collaborative feel this gave her work, in the end, I thought that it was rather disrespectful and cavalier of her. She's no hypocrite--obviously she's fine if people use photos of her art, but it didn't seem right either to be so rewarding of what amounts to theft. If she had been using stock photos it might have been different, but most of the photos actually belonged to somebody.

Penelope Umbrico

| 1 Comment

I found Penelope Umbrico's lecture was quite interesting although I was a little late because of the snow. I have heard Penelope Umbrico's work during my digital photography class and I was really glad that I was able to make this lecture.

I really enjoyed her progress of her work time to time starting from the sunset images through the abstraction lines of the television screen and the changes of technology through photography. Through her progress of her work, I was able to understand better her influence and the inspirations as she progressed along her work time to time. Throughout her lecture, I found that she utilized different social medias in photos such as flicker and timeline technology or search engines into her work which was quite interesting. I think the work that captured my full attention was the sunset work display. I felt that the work was very unique such as the varieties of abstract colors of the sunset but they unified well together as a whole work.

I also really appreciated how specific and her intention about her work also the steps how she progresses her work. I really enjoyed how she showed her work thoroughly while explaining well that makes the audience easily to understand. I was really amazed how she thought of utilizing the internet into her photography work which I was very inspired.

Overall, I really enjoyed her talk. She engaged well with the audience to answer the question carefully with honest. Compared to the two previous talk with Dianna Molzan, I was able to understand fully about the progress about the personal work which I really appreciated.

Penelope Umbrico

| 1 Comment

I found Penelope Umbrico's lecture very interesting and inspiring. I have seen her work previously and found it intriguing but I have not looked much beyond the images shown to me. Because of that, I never understood the conceptuality in her work.

How Umbrico structured her lecture was partially why it was so great. She was able to move through a timeline of her work--starting from the Flickr sunset images to her current projects with reflections in television screens. While she progressed in the timeline, Umbrico continuously looped back to earlier work so the audience was able to make obvious cognitive connections. The presentation itself was quite beautiful as well. The Keynote software allowed her to reveal her work in a sensible fashion.

What I also appreciated was how she explained her process. There were no gaps in her work where I felt like I did not understand how she had gotten to that point. Each project seemed to build on top of a previous one--or extend into a minor, sub-project. This was especially apparent in her television series. I believe she had at least three different projects result out of the original. Then, how she was able to relate it back to the earlier Flickr project was intriguing. She spoke about how she found that the unauthored television images revealed more about the photographer, than the authored Flickr sunset images. This she found ironic, and explained it in depth to the audience.

Lastly, I appreciated how transparent Umbrico was with her finances. Many artists do not explain how their funding works. The Craigslist selling was quite interesting and she spoke about how no collectors were buying work directly from her. She also noted that she was spending much more time on various projects than what she was getting paid for. I respected her for revealing this so openly to her audience.

Penelope Umbrico

| 2 Comments

Penelope Umbrico Lecture

I enjoyed how she thought out side of the box; exploring what her media could do. I think that it's interesting how people get so upset that she uses images that she finds. The idea of authorship comes to mind; when I look at how people are upset about her using peoples photographs. She is not using photos that were intended for art. She is using them to produce a work of art of her own. The work would not be as strong if she did not create the dialog with the audience.
The images that she makes are her art and have a strong signature look. People would never question a painter's work of a still-life's or of a landscape. Those images are not created from their imagination purely. All artists are affected but the images around them, either man made or natural objects in the world.
She has done what I am set out to do; produce work that has something that sets it apart from others. I really enjoyed her craigslist works because she is truly taking an everyday image, created to explain what the item for sale looks like, and then she looks at the images to create a story with them. She was able to find items and images that the person taking the picture may not have ever looked at or thought of. (reflections and unnecessary objects in the photo).
This was one of the better lectures this year because she took the time to explain her processes.
-Nina A.

Penelope Umbrico

| No Comments

Before going to Penelope Umbrico's talk I was very skeptical about her work. I wasn't personally a fan of her work and I just thought she was stealing people's images to make her own work. I also thought the concept of her work was too simple minded and there was absolutely no effort to it. I am very glad that I did attend her lecture because I learned a whole lot about Penelope's work. It was interesting to her explain her reasoning for what she does and to here her defend why she does what she does.
I found that her work isn't simple minded and effortless but she actually spends a lot of time looking for images on the web to use within her projects. Also, the scale of some of her projects is enormous. For example her project Sunsets stretches down a long hallway-like wall.
Yes, she spends a lot of time on these projects, but I still find myself feeling a little skeptical if these images are stolen images. In her defense she does crop the images down to only a small portion of the picture and it becomes totally unrecognizable to the photographer of the original image. Also, like she said, one person does not own the sun. In a way I just wish she would go out and take pictures of sunsets to make it more of her own work. It does seem like she is doing more of her own picture taking in resent projects like the one of the old cameras. It will be interesting to see if she continues to take her own pictures for projects in the future.

-Moriah Kelly

Visiting Artist- Christina Schmid

| No Comments

Christina Schmid's lecture was definitely an interesting lecture so far. Her approach into interpreting an art was very interesting to me. From her introduction she described her job as " writing with art not writing about art" I thought this quote was very interesting yet amuse me into curiosity how she writes "with art" because I always adapt through the media or in the book, the society usually makes the art into critics about the artwork itself. The website, Quodlibetica was very interesting website to look at while Christina was precisely told us her accomplishment and goals throughout the website.

I was impressed how Christina engages or having conversation the work together and put the engagement into her paper. Rather than criticizing the work in the form and content, she told us that she puts her theoretical ideas and emotions into her writing. I loved how Christina was very organized and used the form of literacy to the audience in a way to understand better what her job is about.

I was also feeling empathize about not understanding the art or the work sometimes. I felt stupidity over myself for not understanding the artwork. But I was thankful when Christina said "art is full of curiosity" But someday I want to engage with art not talking about them directly in the future that shares the language together.

Penelope Umbrico

| 3 Comments

Penelope Umbrico's work is both easy and difficult. It is easy in the sense that it packs a punch, it has an immediate visual impact that grabs the viewer, the more brightly colored pieces, such as Sunsets or Broken Sets, in particular. There is a wow factor and a beauty to them. Some of her other collections fall under an aesthetic category that is rooted more in visual interest than beauty. They are not immediately striking. They do not have the bold colors and patterns that grab my eye. Instead I want to look closely, take in the details.

In either case, whether initially "beautiful" or "interesting" I am pulled in. The multitude of like images make me want to explore. Despite the grand scale of a piece in its entirety I do not want to scan it from afar, take it in as a whole, but I begin to dive in and examine its constituent parts. I look for differences in the objects and similarities between them. I notice how images are cropped, how they are placed within the frame of the picture, and how they are organized as a group. Umbrico's work makes me consciously consider composition much more than I normally do. Usually, when I look at a painting for instance, I might note aspects of the composition that stand out or seems particularly effective, but rarely do I wonder to myself why the artist did that. Yet in Umbrico's work I find myself frequently doing just that. Why did she put that group of remote controls there versus there? I know the answer is the same as a painter's, that it has to do with the same compositional principles and personal choices of the artist, yet my impulse is to seek the answer in my head not in my eye.

This brings me to why, despite the scale and accessible subject matter of the pieces, I say her work is hard. There is no doubt that even though the subject and visual impact of her work is recognized immediately, once I have taken that in, - which I do fairly quickly - It moves into the conceptual. As I said, I look closer. It is kind of like opening up a box I find on the shelf. When I first lift the flaps I get a general sense of its contents, but then I start digging and pulling stuff out. I want to know what is at the bottom of the box, underneath everything. I need to hold things in my hand, touch them, not just look. That's kind of how I take in and experience Umbrico's work. I get a general look, then I delve into it piece by piece. But then there comes a point when I may or may not have found what I needed, but either way I put everything back in the box and the box back on the shelf. I feel that way about Umbrico's work as well. I am looking for something is not really there, and once I have thoroughly checked it out I ask myself, so what?

But the answer is surprising, because there is something in her work that stays with me, that compels me ask the so what? not in a dismissive way, but as a a real question. Why this? Why these things? Why like that? Why now? What am I really seeing? Why am I lingering here?

Paul Shambroom's excellent introduction to Umbrico's talk helped me to begin to answer these questions by putting Umbrico's work into a greater context. Then when Umbrico herself gave such an in depth description of her process and what she is trying to explore, I had even more food for thought. I loved Umbrico's curiosity and intellect, her playfulness too, and admire how she follows her thoughts and ideas and continues to explore them down different avenues and circle back to them from a new direction. Her talk was enlightening and entertaining. I felt like I was given the opportunity to sit beside her as she works and get a real sense of who she is, what she is doing and where she is going with it. I felt included somehow. I think that is rare in an artist talk.

Still there is a part of me that felt her ideas make for great conversation yet stay there in that realm. For me her work's impact is more intellectual than emotional, so that once I have thought about it, and considered those thoughts for a while, I usually find myself done with it. It is not the manifested piece that stays with me but the thoughts that arise from them, and those thoughts are interesting but, for me, limited.

At one point in the talk Umbrico described her work as involving a certain amount of compulsiveness. That is evident as one considers the process of its creation as well as the final piece. But I do not share that compulsion, so where do I go from there? Still wondering, and I think that may be the power of her work right there.

Allison Ruby
April 21, 2013

Visiting Artists Lecture #6 - Christina Schmid

| 2 Comments

Visiting Artists Lecture #6 - Christina Schmid

Bailey Haack
4 April 2013

The lecture by Christina Schmid was different than the rest of the lectures we've heard thus far in class. Early in the talk, she said, "What I do is very mysterious," which I found very interesting. Schmid is a writer and an art critic, and I liked how she described her practice as "writing with art, rather than writing about art." I had never heard someone talk about being an art critic/writer, so I found the talk very engaging.

I was happy to hear Christina talk about how she makes an effort not to impose her own theoretical framework around the art she is discussing. I usually picture art critics as just writing down their first impressions of the art as it impacts them, so it was refreshing to hear how she makes an effort to "engage with the art on its own terms." She also noted that, while it is easy (and perhaps sometimes fun) to write bad reviews about things you hate, it is important to still make an argument for a positive review and give people a reason to care about the work.

Another part of her talk that I really enjoyed was how she described the importance of art criticism and being able to write about art, because once the exhibition is taken down, the writing is all we have left. I hadn't thought of it in this way before, but now lately I have been thinking about the importance of writing about art and archiving. She noted that many artists are not great at describing or talking about their work, and I absolutely agree with this, especially when the meaning of the piece is meant to be left up to the viewer. The open ended-ness of a lot of art makes it difficult to discuss without imposing your own viewpoints and ideas onto it. I liked how Christina made an effort to follow the art and the artist in order to learn more, without imposing her own framework onto it right away.

Christina Schmid

| No Comments

I thought Christina was an exceptional lecturer, her words flow from her mouth so poetically and you can tell she is consumed in language. Writing with art is a different perspective than the previous talks, so it became very interesting to me. I enjoyed Christina speaking about Quodlibetica and how the "made up word" fit so perfectly with what she was trying to accomplish with the site. It was wonderful to hear how she is pleased with her job because there is always something new to write about and or critique. Something that caught my attention was how she thought of herself and other art critics as interpreters for the art, she said " Art doesn't do what language does". This was an interesting perspective because the maker of the art does not always know the possibility of his or her own work, and what kind of conversation or memories, or ideas that can happen when one views their piece. I also was interested in the way she talked about getting to know the artist and their work and how she tries to make her writing very much about the artist instead of herself.

While listening to Christina I had an AHA! moment, I figured out where my discomfort came from as she would say. The last lecture with Dianna and Alex at the Walker made me so uncomfortable and I couldn't figure out why, I thought to myself that I really did not care for the two of them much. As I was listening the Christina and her argument on how the artist does not get to decide the meaning of his or her work, I thought this must be their thinking and immediately felt bad for considering them standoffish. The two ladies may have the same mindset, that they really aren't in control of what the art means and they maybe just don't want to reveal what their art means to them, because they want the viewer to connect and experience their paintings in any context they would like.

Christina Schmid

| 1 Comment

I thoroughly enjoyed Ms Schmid's lectures more so than some of the other lectures we have had in this class thus far. Hearing her talk about the way she "writes with art" instead of just about it, made me think that she is really starting a conversation and participating in the art world in a valuable way.

The lecture was organized in a way that made it easy to follow and yet it was still very informative and complex. I agreed with what she said about how it is somewhat impossible to encapsulate art through language, and how it is like playing air guitar. But I find this kind of writing neither mimicry nor criticism, but rather an opening up of a dialogue between the artist, their audience, and also the writer. Although many artists are themselves sometimes hesitant to talk about what their art is actually "about", I don't think this type of writing necessarily tries to fill that void that the artist often does not, rather it aims to give a separate interpretation and brings a separate knowledge and perspective to the work itself.
I think Christina may have mentioned something along the lines of what I have just said, but there was someone in the audience that confused what she actually said with "the artist is incapable of dissecting and explaining their own work," and for some reason he seemed somewhat offended that Christina wanted to write "with art" instead of "about it". I think it is not meant to offend. She is trying to participate in the conversation of art, and if an artist does no want their to be a conversation about his / her art, then I don't know what the point of exhibiting it would be.

Christina Schmid

| No Comments

I have had Christina Schmid as a professor previous to hearing her talk this semester therefore i knew that I would hear an exceptional lecture. I felt i learned a lot from her talk about critically analyzing artwork and the importance of writing about it. It was interesting to hear how she has gotten to where she is now and her past endeavors when she started out her carrier with writing about artwork. Though I thought he was a bit rude, I enjoyed the comment and response provided by the gentleman in the audience who did not understand the position or purpose of the analytical art writer. I think he was under the impression that the role of a writer is less important than the role of the artist. It is true that without the artist, art critics would have nothing to write about, but that does not make their job unimportant in the least. It is also true that, in my opinion, the best artwork speaks cleverly to the audience and does not need, but still benefits from having someone critique and wright about it. Having people critique and write about artwork is important for several reasons, first being that having multiple people analytically write about a work of art provides the audience with diverse perspective from which to view the work that they may not have discovered or considered on their own. Second, quite frequently the artist themselves is not the proper person to write about their work. This is most crucially because they see their work through the eyes which created it, giving them a very unique perspective that is not always understood by the audience. And more often then not a visual artist who is a master at creating their work is typically not a master at writing. Some of the most talented and visually creative people I know are terrible, terrible, writers. I personally create my artwork as a preferred means of communication than writing and I would wholeheartedly embrace writers to critique and write about my work, even if their analysis was negative. To me, over half the point of being an artist is to create conversation with my audience, and analytical writers are a key prompt and translation for that conversation.

-Bryn Gleason

Diane Molzan & Alex Olson

| 2 Comments

I hate to give a purely negative review, but quite frequently I find myself disappointed after hearing an artist speak about their work. Very occasionally I find myself inspired and overall pleased from artist talks, but only occasionally. I have found that it can be very unsatisfactory to hear an artist, whose work I admire, talk about their work because they are regularly less enthusiastic or deeply involved with their work, particularly in a conceptual sense. Unfortunately, I was very disappointed by both Diane Molzan's and Alex Olson's talk, particularly miss Olson. I found Olson to be very uninterested in having a conversation about her work. It was hard to tell if her lack of enthusiasm and depth was due to her mood or feeling about the particular talk, or if it was due to an emotional disconnect or lack of interest in her work. Either of these options was an unfortunate vibe to give to her audience. Part of the issue that I had with this talk could be, in part, due to the unpreparedness of the talk as a whole, such as not having images prepared to share with the audience or not having enough questions prepared that the artists actually felt like answering or talking about. I do know that talking about my own work is not nearly as easy as creating it, and for some visual artists it can be very difficult to remove themselves from the studio and observe, critique, and discuss their own artwork. Never the less, I think it is crucial for every visual artist to first consider their artistic practice, why they are making what they make, what their art is about, and if and how their artwork is relevant to anyone else. After a thorough and deep consideration of ones work, artists should practice and hopefully become comfortable talking about their work. Not being able to do this causes the artist to loose credibility for his or her own practice. There is nothing more disappointing in an artist lecture than to hear an artist repeatedly say things like "I don't want to talk about that" or "no my artwork is not about that..." and not giving an alternative answer, simply avoiding all answers about the content in their work.

-Bryn Gleason

Cristina Schmid

| No Comments

This talk was probably my favorite out of all of them so far. It was the first that I have ever heard of this kind of work. I had obviously heard of art critics before, but I felt like Schmid's work is something more than simply critiquing art. This seems to me a good way to think of her work because she described it as writing with art, not about it. Also, hearing how she got to the point she is at now sounds more like she had to invent a place for herself in the art world. That is something that I admired about her work.It contrasts Ali's somewhat unhopeful view that there is not enough room left in the art world for more artists. Even if this is true, one can just go out and make there own room.
By keeping to the traditional style of a good "responsible" talk Schmid definitely held my attention and added to my overall take away of the message. After hearing this talk, I feel like I have a better understanding of the art world. All the other talks were just about one little piece of it. Just one artist's or a small group's interpretation of it. However, I do not think that I would have felt the same way had some one else given this talk. It was Schmid's personal interest and her passion for her work that really conveyed the most meaning. She was genuinely invested not only in her work, but in telling us all about it.

Erin Persons

Christina Schmid

| 2 Comments

After listening to a great many artists talk about their work, the perspective and viewpoints of an art critic was surprisingly refreshing and enjoyable. Schmid's work sounded very fascinating, and she seemed to be a bit of an artist with words herself. I really appreciated the way she talked about the critical process, talking about how much work she puts into reviewing different artist's work and exhibits. I also enjoyed her speaking to the art of interpreting a piece of art apart from the intentions of the artist. As an English major, this is very similar to the way that we examine literature. When we look at the work, the author's opinion is no more important than anyone else's, and we try to let the text speak on its own, because very often, as Schmid pointed out, the work is saying something other than what the artist intended.
It was great to hear her use the analogy of poking a soccer ball full of tiny pins and watching it deflate. I'm sure negative reviews are fun to write for her, but they are definitely also the most important reviews for the artist. It's always nice to hear that someone loves your work, but at the end of the day, it doesn't help all that much. We need people who are willing to get into the nitty-gritty and criticize the work we've done, because only then can we make the improvements that we don't notice ourselves. Critics fill a highly important role in the cycle of creativity, because they allow for improvement through their criticism.

Christina Schmid

| 4 Comments

In a class mostly consisting of working artists' lectures, it was somewhat unexpected to have a lecture by an art critic. However, I think in this case, the lecture fit perfectly into the mold of the rest of the class, and in itself was absolutely fascinating for me.

In contrast to the last lecture, which I'd had a few problems with, I thought Christina did a brilliant job of laying out what she does, her reasons for doing it, and how she got started in the first place. I'd never really considered how exactly one becomes an art critic, and hearing that was certainly fascinating. One of the things that stayed with me from the talk was this quote: "If no one writes about a show, it never happened." While certainly a bit of an exaggeration, it raises a key point: documentation and criticism are incredibly important to the production of good work. It's easy to forget that there must be curators and critics who sift through the massive output of the creative class to make comments on it, but the truth is, the work they do is absolutely essential.

In addition, I found her comments about her interactions with the artist to be very interesting. To hear a critic say that they do in fact want a dialogue with an artist they criticize is highly refreshing, as I believe this is a way of furthering conversations. The short bit of debate between the gentleman in the back of the room and Christina was interesting, and I would've loved to hear the rest of the discussion about artists relationships' with critics.

All in all, I found this to be another highly engaging talk that I left inspired to think in new ways about the work I produce, and I enjoyed hearing a new perspective on the art world!

Christina Schmid

| No Comments

I really enjoyed listening to Christina Schmid's talk. It's not often that you get to listen to a critic talk about their experiences and how they became to be an art critic. One point that Christina emphasized is that she writes with art, not about it. At first I was confused as to how she could say something like that; I almost felt as if she were also trying to take credit in the meaning of a piece of art along with the actual artist. How wrong was I for thinking that! She brought up how some artists have a hard time finding the meaning behind their work or that they have a hard time trying to explain it to their audiences and how writing with the art can help reveal the meaning behind a piece of work to even the creators themselves. I feel as if this issue is a lot more prevalent than what most people think and part of a critique's job is to basically give feedback to the artist, telling them whether or not others will like what they are seeing. This, I believe allows artist give clearer talks about their creations and thus they are better able to connect with their audiences.

Back to what Christina was saying about writing with art rather than about it, I also think that a handful (if not more)of critics out there end up shaping the meaning behind a piece without regard to what the artist is aiming for. I know of some critics that seem to think that their opinion is the only one that matters and it was incredibly refreshing to hear Christina talk about how she likes to try and see things that others don't.

I also really appreciated how well she was able to connect to her audience. She kept her stories entertaining and I didn't find myself zoning out for brief periods of time like I have for a couple of other guest lecturers. Christina seems to have worked really hard to get to where she is today with not only her writings but also the online magazine. She has definitely influenced me to read more critical articles about both art and the artists alike.

Christina Schmid lecture

| 3 Comments

I really appreciated Christina's talk because I could sense how passionately she spoke about what she does and the discipline of art criticism. What I found intriguing was that there were many forms to write about art, but each has its own way of presenting the subject. Some tend to be overly academic, while others are more like a conversation with the artist. I feel that outlets such as the internet, allows writers the freedom to write with art by embracing the inherent conversational qualities of visual art. This type of writing feels much more personal and engaging, Instead of the usual black and white perspective that comments on whether a piece is successful or unsuccessful.

I am glad that there are writers like Christina that help interpret artwork. Because I find it immensely helpful to listen to interpretations from others because they often highlight aspects in my artwork that I would have never noticed. These ideas tend to occur subconsciously until that moment when someone gives a new perspective that transforms them into ideas that can be further explored. I appreciate interpretation because it invites the artist to think about their work in a wider context instead of only thinking about the processes that lead up to the finished product. Conversations with others definitely is incredibly helpful because it allows me to see the work in a whole different way I couldn't have possibly have seen on my own.

Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson artist talk

| 1 Comment

I had to opportunity visit the exhibition "Painter Painter", curated by Eric Crosby personally, with my painting class. It was definitely helpful to see these pieces in person, and to be provided with background information from Eric about the artists and the works themselves.

I was excited to attend the talk because I was interested in hearing more information from the artists about their inspirations, art processes, and their personalities. But I was slightly disappointed. When the artists were asked where they drew inspiration from, it seemed like they were dodging the question by being slightly vague in their responses. The overall energy of the talk was slightly awkward because it looked like Alex, Dianna, and Eric were unsure how to delve deeper in certain topics. Difficult questions were asked by Crosby such as style, which were never truly answered and were forgotten.
There were a lot of awkward silences on stage. Molzan and Olson looked like they did not want to take part in the artist talk, and it seems like their personalities were removed.
From observing the lecture as a whole, I learnt that a more engaging artist talk requires the artist to actually connect and involve the audience such as Laylah Ali's talk.

I did appreciate Alex delving into the topic of life as an artist, and the struggles and acceptance that failure is very much a part of the art process. Learning from these mistakes and trying different solutions until something clicks is definitely something I find very rewarding in my art practice.

Laylah Ali artist talk

| 1 Comment

Laylah Ali's lecture was definitely a inspiring talk because of the way she presented that moved away from the normal format of usual artist talks. Laylah was much more interested in presenting herself as a person and involved more humor and personality than any artist talk I've ever been to. The usual persona that artists create, that distances themselves from the public is shed away in Laylah Ali's lecture. I loved how she wanted the audience to be involved in the talk, and she achieved this by allowing audience members to ask questions at any point. This jumping from topic to topic from her Greenhead series inspirations to talks about her undergraduate life and graduate school, was definitely a breath of fresh air.

I'm very use to artists talking about their work in chronological order and never straying from that format, but it was interesting to see her jumping around slides to keep her audience on their toes. In Laylah's ink drawings, I wonder what kind of discipline is required to achieve the incredible incredible amount of detail. In the Greenhead series, I can't even fathom the thought of how much time was spent creating all those pages. Adobe illustrator is not a very easy program to use, and takes time to get things to work how you like it to be. It was interesting to hear how she didn't personally use illustrator, but asked a friend to create the series instead, with the instructions from Laylah. Which is a process I've never heard an artist used before.

I also appreciated Laylah's honesty about her views of the current job market for artists. Most of the audience were undergraduates who were likely art majors, and it was an interesting subject that many of us often ponder about as we continue our education here at the University of Minnesota. I found it helpful for an artist to say that career will be a difficult path, so it would be best to have skills from other areas as well that will prepare you if it doesn't work out in the beginning.

Christina Schmid

| 2 Comments

I really enjoyed hearing Christina talk about how she writes about artwork. Having her as a professor I have always wondered why she teaches in the art department, and she brought up how a student from one of her classes asked her that and it was nice to hear that I wasn't the only one thinking that. Then, she went on to explain what got her into talking about writing about art. It is interesting that she was at an artist talk when she decided to start writing about art. I liked that Christina spoke about how she enjoys writing negative reviews of artwork, because lots of people wouldn't admit that.
At most of these artist talks we get to hear artists talk we get to see what they have created and their process of creating. It was fascinating to see the other side of the art world. Seeing the works she wrote about and her process of reviewing was nice. I could tell that she is very passionate about what she does based on the way she speaks about it. It is nice that there are writers out there like Christina that help interpret artwork. Personally, I think there are aspects in an artist's work that they don't even notice themselves and art critics are the ones that help artist interpret their own work and notice things that they did not even notice themselves. An art critic is that new set of eyes that sees things the artist himself or herself doesn't see.

Christina Schmid

| 1 Comment

I do not have many friends who enjoy going to see art and discussing it beyond what they like or don't like. (For most of the people I know, even that is a stretch.) I enjoy looking at art and talking about it, so it is nice to know there are others out there somewhere. Even the artists that I know more often seem to focus on their process and what they are trying to accomplish with it, than looking at art within a wider cultural context. That is why I so appreciated Christina Schmid's talk and her clarity on the value of the independent discipline of art criticism. I was interested in learning about the world of art writing, hearing about the different forms it can take and what is involved in each. Basically I liked learning about how that business works.

During the question and answer when an audience member suggested that art criticism is condescending to artists, I wanted to jump in and start arguing as well. To me it seemed like an undeveloped viewpoint, one that didn't have a full understanding of what good art writing is about. Why would discussing someone's art from a full range of perspectives be condescending? Thoughtful writing about art can take an individual experience and put it into wider context, or share that experience with others who were not there, or relate one experience to another to embrace a greater meaning or deeper understanding of them. Frankly, I was perplexed by the audience member's argument.

I think Christina's point that sometimes artists are not the best spokesperson for their art is very true. I know that even in the lowly art school critique, there have been many times that an instructor or classmate has noticed something in my work or that of another student that I had not clued into at all, but brought me new perspective and appreciation to what had been undertaken. Not only that, but often it inspired me to begin exploring that idea more consciously. I do think (as I discussed in a previous post) that it is important for an artist to be able to articulate what her goal is, what ideas she is working with and the process she is working through to try to express them, but writing about art, your own or others' work, or the common threads and evolution of contemporary work, is a completely different discipline and skill set, one that, in my view, artists should embrace and participate with. As Christina said, it is a conversation. It seems so few people want to engage in true conversation these days. Instead so many people simply want to make declarations.

When artists put their work out there, it seems to me that they are inherently inviting engagement - conversations - on any number of levels. Therein lies the gift. What else is the point, except perhaps ego? It is not just what one creates, but how it is received by the viewer. I don't think as an artist one should try to control that conversation. Why would one want to silence that voice?

Allison Ruby
April 5, 2013

Alex Olson & Dianna Molzan

| No Comments

From the studio talk with Dianna and Alex, I felt like I got a some insight into the lives of artists today. However, I felt like I got the least out of this talk compared to all the previous ones. Both women seemed not to want to give much information about their thinking processes and or inspiration, which I can understand to a point, but when you fly from Los Angeles to Minneapolis for a studio talk at the Walker Art Center , not to mention where some of your current work is on display, people want more than "It's not clear where my ideas come from".... Or... "I let the work lead".. And I feel the audience agreed. Also as I listened, I noticed that Alex did most of the question answering and talking for that matter and when a question came up that took some time to think about they both looked at one another like the curator shouldn't have asked. Maybe on their flight here they could have thought about what questions they might be asked and how they were going to answer them. Anyhow I did enjoy the atmosphere that the Walker gives and it was a pleasure to actually be able to stand in front of Alex and Dianna's works of art after the talk. During the talk Dianna spoke about how much you can mess with a painting and still classify it as a painting, and her ideas became clearer once I viewed her work. As for Alex I enjoy that she shared an everyday found object that she uses to create texture in her work, that being a window scraper.

Alex Olson and Dianna Molzan

| 1 Comment

After the Laylah Ali talk, I had been fairly excited to see what the next talk would consist of, especially with it being through the Walker, whose exhibits I often thoroughly enjoy. Unfortunately, the talk ended up being one of the most frustrating, unhelpful, and at times even infuriating things I have taken part in.

As a preface, I think both of these artists are immensely talented. After looking at their work both in Painter, Painter and online, I was impressed by their brushwork, the subtlety of their patterns, and especially Molzan's examinations of how the canvas and the piece interact. That said, I felt that neither of them wanted to be at the artist talk, and were downright hostile towards the audience.

For much of the talk, both of the artists and the moderator seemed to be embroiled in a private conversation, referring to private jokes, leaving sentences unfinished and speaking in very general terms about their work. Sometimes, one of the artists would speak for a good bit of time, but I would feel that almost nothing had been said at the end of it. Both artists appeared visibly uncomfortable for much of the talk, and didn't show much of their own work at all, making it fairly difficult to connect what they were saying with concrete examples in their work. I understand that a certain level of foreknowledge is expected, but to expect everyone in the audience to know their entire catalogue well seems a bit silly to me.

The breaking point of the lecture came for me during the question and answer portion, however. After a woman asked a question, that although a bit oddly worded, had a good point, those on stage absolutely savaged her and her question. As someone who appreciates hearing artists talk about fellows who challenge them and intrigue them, I too was curious to hear what artists in the exhibition Molzan and Olson found interesting. So when Molzan flippantly dismissed the woman's question as "from the American Idol mindset of wanting to compare everyone and pick one winner," I was frankly offended and shocked. I was thankful when the lecture ended and I could leave.
In the end, the talk served for me as an example of what not to do in an artist lecture: do not treat your audience poorly, do not create a private club on stage, do not only half-heartedly engage with the proceedings, and most of all, do not enter unwillingly. I was extremely frustrated directly after the talk, but continued reflection has made me glad for the lessons I learned that day.

-Trevor Spriggs

Diana Molzan / Alex Olson

| 4 Comments

I felt that during this lecture for the Painter, Painter exhibit, there was a lot of strange energy coming from the stage. The mediator did not seem interested in following the direction that either Molzan or Olson wanted to go in and continuously posed very difficult questions. I believe that this tension did not allow the audience to get as intellectually involved with the discussion that was occurring as possible. For instance, the mediator posed a question about style and how it is not supposed to be "constructed" anymore. I noticed that Molzan especially tried to move away from the question because she did not understand what "too stylish" was, but the mediator continued to push it. It clearly began to make Molzan uncomfortable on the stage.

The personalities of both Molzan and Olson were very removed I believe. They did not seem to ever be too interested in what they were doing and spoke with a slight emotional disconnect. I am curious as to whether or not it is LA culture to act like that as an artist, because from what I have heard, that seems to be the norm.

I felt that Molzan talked about an interesting concept with her work about wanting herself completely removed. She was not totally ignorant to the fact that that was impossible, but she noted it as her goal. I had a quiet, guilty pleasured reaction when looking at her work after the lecture because I knew it was not meant to be analyzed. I could stand there and ponder it, merely to experience its physicality.

Lastly, the structure of the conversation was not well developed. The mediator did not walk the audience through work of the artists while they were speaking and I felt like there was little connection between the audience and the conversation that was happening on stage.

Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson

| No Comments

I was not able to attend this talk in the flesh, but I did watch it via video on the Walker's website. Considering this fact, I did not have much context for the artist's conversation, which I found somewhat closed-off and a bit too abstract for my taste. Although some might say the format of the other artist's talk may have been more like a history lesson, I appreciated how they did not expect those who attended to already be familiar with their work and to know how this work came to be.

With this talk, it felt like the two artists and the questioner were having a private conversation, with almost no regard to how the audience would react. I guess it was interesting to hear about their lives in Los Angeles, and how they could be a part of a flourishing artist community while also having the option of retreating, but to be honest that is true of most places. If I wanted to hole up in my apartment in Minneapolis (or even Brooklyn, NY) and make art for a while, I could easily do the same thing. To be honest, I had a hard time following exactly what they were talking about because I lacked context and they weren't talking much about specific works. The way they talked about how they worked instead of the actual product was somewhat interesting, but it would have been more to my liking if they talked more about why and way their works were actually about.

Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson

| No Comments

I was not able to make it to the talk given at the Walker but I have been able to go and see the Painter, Painters exhibit. While I was there I felt like I could spend hours walking through the exhibit without getting tired of it, which is strange for me because I don't normally like spending all my time observing more of the abstract painting, I typically prefer more of the realistic paintings and sculptures. Both Dianna and Alex have such unique and creative ways of working and I really appreciate their originality. I know that both of these artists have had quite an influence in LA and I think it would be really interesting to be able to go to places that artists such as Dianna and Alex are more comfortable in to see where they draw their inspiration from. From what I've heard of the talk given by Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson, I didn't really miss much by not going but I know from reading up on them a little bit and they both seem to be very successful artists and I found it really surprising that they seemed to have such a difficult time connecting with the audience.

Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson

| 2 Comments

As I sat in the talk for Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson, I quickly found myself appreciating and simultaneously becoming discouraged by the fact that the format of this talk was so different than others we had attended. Its structure as more of an observed conversation was interesting to say the least, and it led to a much more informal time than we had previous experienced, when other artists had prepared exactly what they were going to mention and talk about. On the other hand, I was disappointed that Molzan and Olson did not focus more directly on their works, instead talking about other parts of the artist's life. This was remedied to a certain extent at the end, when they showed numerous pictures of the artists' paintings, but I still wished that they had been able to talk more about them.
I thought it was particularly engaging when they talked about living in an artist's town like Los Angeles. One of them mentioned that they have a community around them when they want it, but that they can also withdraw from it for months at a time if necessary. I certainly could appreciate the need for a social life at certain times in the creation of art, which is primarily a solitary activity. I believe they also mentioned not keeping regular "work hours" instead being constantly "at work." I think that this is also an important point for people to remember, especially since ideally doing art is something the artist loves. If they insist on treating it like work, it becomes work, and it won't be something they love to do anymore.

Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson

| 3 Comments

Unfortunately, I was unable to the Painter Painter show, but I have seen their work before and it was nice that they showed which works were in the exhibit. I was a little disappointed with this talk, though. I felt that it was a little boring and Erik asked them questions about things in their personal lives that I felt like you needed to know about them to understand this talk. I was also disappointed that they didn't talk more about the process they go through to create their works rather than so much talk about their lives in Los Angeles at the beginning of the talk. I was very glad that an audience member had made a comment about not showing their work, because when they had finally shown more examples of their work it was easier to grasp how they work as artists.
I do enjoy their work a lot, they each have a specific way of working and it's easy to tell whose work belongs to whom. I feel like Diane should be considered more of a sculpture rather than a painter because she makes her canvases into three-dimensional works and uses materials other than paints. I was glad that an audience member asked her a question relating to the same thoughts I had on the sculpture aspect of her work. She seemed to explain that she was indeed a painter because she painted on these works. I view Alex's work to be more of a painters work because her works are two-dimensional paintings.

-Moriah Kelly

Laylah Ali

| No Comments

When I attended the Laylah Ali lecture, i was in a bit of an odd situation. It was the first lecture I would be attending of the class, having missed the first few lectures because of unforeseen circumstances. I was unsure of what to expect as I took my seat in the Weisman, but I figured I would at least hear a mildly interesting lecture.

I was wrong. It was one of the best artist talks I've ever been to.

Laylah Ali was one of the most fascinating, frank, and talented artists I have had the fortune to see speak in awhile, and in the space of that short lecture on her work, I found myself enraptured. I am not a painter, in fact I mostly work in film and digital mediums. But the skill, energy, and passion that Ali pours into her work is evident not only from the work itself, which is on its own remarkable, but from her honest and refreshing discussions of her work. The art that she makes is punishing physically, as she discussed, yet she did not shy away from discussing her own complicated relationship with her Greenheads series. Her statements about beginning the series, seeing it through, and then moving on struck me as something that seems simple, yet requires a major commitment by an artist.

She stated early in the lecture that she did not want to give "the typical artist talk," and when she opened it up for questions, she made this clear. Her discussions about her own varied experience in art schools, her frustrations with the art world, and so on were all intriguing to me, but I was highly impressed how she treated all audience members with respect and humility, and they did the same to her. This created an atmosphere that was highly conducive to discussion, and didn't feel hostile or forced at all.

Overall, I highly enjoyed the talk, but I think the statement she made that has lingered in my head the longest is this: "You can't see your own psychosis." Simple, but true, and a highly interesting way to look at oneself. Sometimes, I find myself examining the work I produce and the process I use to obtain it, but there is a certain amount that I simply cannot see being myself, and that's alright. But I've definitely enjoyed considering it, and I think I'll consider to do so.

-Trevor Spriggs

Visiting Artists Lecture #5 - Dianna Molzan with Alex Olson

Bailey Haack
14 March 2013

The talk this week with Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson was a little bit dry compared with the past couple weeks. Though I enjoyed both of their work, and they both seemed like interesting people, the talk seemed unrehearsed and somewhat awkward, and the format of the questions being asked was not very conducive to getting any fascinating, lively conversation going.

Both artists discussed working in Los Angeles, and how there are many different outlets and places to show art there - their example of the apartment gallery shows was very interesting to me, and I wonder if there are people doing that kind of thing here in the cities, or if it's just a West coast thing. They were both very individual artists, and neither one seemed interested in working with - or even around - another artist. They described how they hide away in their studios and how they both like to be in complete control of their works - though both of them work in a less image-based, more abstract aesthetic style.

I thought it was interesting that both of them described wanting their works to project ideas out, but also wanting the viewers to be able to project their own views in onto the works. They both described their works as having a narrative, but the narrative isn't necessarily about the artist.

The part of their talk that engaged me the most was when they were asked the question, "What do you reference, or do you reference, within your art?" Both of the artists seemed to have a difficult time answering, and Dianna noted that, though she is sure that her general exposure to the world surely fuels her work, she isn't always logically thinking about what/if she is referencing others in her work. This got me thinking about the importance or unimportance of studying art to creating art. We absorb bits and pieces of the world as we go about our lives, and I have always believed that this absorption can be as beneficial as any class, especially if we are conscious of it. The two artists were somewhat negative about their school experiences, and I wonder how much of their art/aesthetic learning came from school, and how much from simply absorbing through their creative minds.

Dianna Molzan & Alex Olson

| 1 Comment

The talk with Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson was rather a bit confusing to me. I first regret that I wasn't able to visit the exhibition, "Painter, Painters." If I were able to visit the exhibition beforehand, I will be able to understand and connect more about the artist inspiration and the intention of both artist's work. But, I felt that the talk was still unorganized, which the system would have been better to show both of their work and put in as the discussion format in the beginning rather than showing them at the end while the audience members asked a question to show the work. Since I am not a painter, I had some difficulties to engage with the artists. However, the artist work was quite interesting; abstracted and utilized varieties of materials into the painting with the unique display.

Overall, the audience discussion panel was the most engaging moment of the talk. The audience definitely asked interesting question for the artist to answer in a unique way and I liked how the audience had lot of opportunity to ask the artist a question. But, as I said in the beginning, it was rather inconvenient that that the overall talk was unorganized and dry at the same time. If the talk was organized, I would have definitely would be engaged more on listening to the talk.

Dianna Molzan & Alex Olson

| 1 Comment

I had no idea what to expect going into this talk. What I originally expected from the talks we would here was a more technical description of the artist's works. What I have experienced with the talks so far has been more about the artist's personality and life story and the inspiration behind their work. Molzan and Olson's talk was more along the lines of what I originally expected. Even so, it was unfortunately a bit over my head. I am not a painter. Not even an artist, so a lot of the deeply technical and specifically painter-oriented topics were beyond my ability to follow completely. It would have been helpful to have seen the exhibit of their work before going into the talk. I thought that they would show pictures and discuss each piece individually. But I did understand their opinion about digital copies of their work. It makes sense that they do not like to have their work copied because so much of the meaning is portrayed through minute details and texture as well as the size and physical presence of the piece. Though I found the discussion very hard to follow, I got more out of the question and answer bit at the end. I especially liked one man's comment about his interpretation of (I cannot remember if it was Molzan or Olson's) work. He was convinced that he saw certain themes and messages in specific pieces and she politely told him he was mistaken. She explained that while none of that was her intention, she could allow for how someone might see that. Commentators of art usually see things that were perhaps not put there intentionally, but that is the great thing about sharing art. So that people may be inspired.


Erin Persons

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from April 2013 listed from newest to oldest.

March 2013 is the previous archive.

May 2013 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.