Dianna Molzan and Alex Olson

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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.

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I agree that the focus should have been more geared to the artists' work. It would have helped if the mediator walked us through images during the discussion and that would have been able to juxtapose well their lifestyle against their work. You are very true about an artist needing to love their work. I appreciated hearing from both Molzan and Olson that they are constantly "at work" because that is the only way they are able to develop a concrete body of work. For people that may not necessarily understand abstract art, this point was especially important.

The idea of being constantly at work instead of setting work hours is one of the most important things an artist can realize, and was probably the most important thing said in the entirety of Diane Molzan and Alex Olson’s talk. It’s easy to think of being a working artist as a job just like any other, but in truth, it’s something in its own entirely. As Kurt Vonnegut once said, “Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow.”

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This page contains a single entry by joh09227 published on April 4, 2013 8:31 AM.

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