Wooster Collective has a new series of photos of artists' workspaces. One of the things I most enjoyed about the recent Yoshitomo Nara exhibition was that part of the space was used to re-create aspects of his studio environment. I like the thought of a studio being a gathering place for ideas and conceptual energy. Creativity is a really strong force in my life, and my desire to honor its influence has determined the choices I've made: where I live, what I do, etc.
In that spirit, I found an old notebook to re-read my notes on the first "Creativity Now" conference (put together by Tokion magazine in 2003). Highlights:
"The only truly independent film is self-financed" - Christine Vachon
"I've gone where my instincts have taken me rather than what I thought would make money for me or other people." - Neil Labute
Peter Saville on design v. the design-look: He noted that that music industry has low standards, and the he knew that by just meeting those standards, he would go nowhere; "I would reach 30 or 35 and be past my sell-by date." The standard really mattered to him, because he saw that quality, and setting a high standard -- that exceeded expectations -- with his own work was the only way out of that industry.
Ryan McGinniss showed a dynamic chart that demonstrated "the commodification of street art," with "street art" in the middle and nodes radiating outward, labeles "style", "content", and "form" on the left, and "free", "illegal", and "public" on the right. He also differentiated between self-produced work and sponsored agendas as they relate to commodification of the product.
Matthew Barney discussed his Cremaster series as a meditation on the creative process that explored both the birth of an idea and its decay and expression of release into the world. Storytelling, athleticism (being involved in a dialogue with your body), and narrative (trying to locate the parts inside of you, and changing them) are all components of his work. He's also motivated by the quest to find the center -- getting back to a "fertile, reductive place" and making a framework for that to happen, as well as considering the future and natural progression of expression: drawings, objects, making performances -- what's next?
I enjoyed the 2003 agenda & speakers, but skipped it in 2004.
Speaking of the creative process, one of my favorite young artists working today, Jes Cannon, has work in the upcoming show, "This time next year..." @ Heidi Cho Gallery. Opening Reception: Thursday, Feb 3, 6-8pm. Runs thru Feb 27.