Sunday, June 9, 2013

Art according to John Gossage

Review Santa Fe closed in overtime at about 1 pm. this afternoon. The final event was a panel discussion that included photographer John Gossage as featured artist.

Gossage, who eschews social media and proudly proclaims he doesn't have a website, made a number of pithy remarks that I jotted down and herewith share:

On art: its primary reason for being is to be viewed repeatedly.

On being an artist: keep your own counsel; do the work because it's what you love to do.

Corollary to above: get a day job to support your work so you are not indebted to anyone. (Although he proudly admitted that he'd never held a job in his life and was a high school drop out.)

On artistic integrity: if on first view the reaction of a viewer of your work is "huh?" then you've succeeded; pictures should not "empty out their information on first viewing."

On his own process: "I don't work in projects; I work with an ongoing sensibility."

Gossage went a bit against the prevailing notions, as he readily admitted, if not being downright iconoclastic - especially regarding his antipathy to social media. I need to let some of these ideas percolate a bit longer before I decide whether or not I agree with them. (Although I definitely like the first one about art deserving repeated viewing.)

To conclude on a more personal note, I believe I've been working with an ongoing sensibility myself. Here is an image I made in Albuquerque, before heading up here to Santa Fe.

Fire Danger Very High Today!

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