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November 9, 2009

Artists are not part of a real system, they aren’t pieces in a large jigsaw puzzle in which each artist has one and only one Categorical Place.

Artist are part of a larger narrative made up of a constellation of small puzzle pieces. The only significant elements that establish visible positions are those that have some adhesive quality, some kind of ‘fit’.

This blog is based on the observation that there is a kind of ‘artist’ whose work creates a fit with its time, an artist whose work is a ‘good enough’ fit.   This fit may only last only as long as the life of the artist.   Vermeer’s work sank out of sight  after his death  (there wasn’t much of it to begin with).   His work regained its lost visibility some time later when it fit into a category that assigned it worth.   J.S. Bach, whose greatness is not currently in dispute, created a body of work that sank into obscurity after his death, no longer influential, resurfacing only when there was some cultural desire for it.

‘Fit’ is not created by some vague or simplistic standard of ‘quality’.  Fit is determined by its conceptual content, a context it comes into or creates out of necessity. The good-enough artist is part of a narrative that’s  infinitely elastic, accommodating any concept that wanders into the frame of reference along with anything that was there already.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 10, 2009 4:27 pm

    Ah too true – from one little piece- and not even an edge – to another.

    Have you seen Robyn Mitchell’s new work – she’s come into her own, really.

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