Archive for March, 2010

A successful morning of bargain vintage shopping with Ali.


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art theory

Perhaps it is because my role in our postgraduate curating project is that of creative writer that I feel all of a sudden that a million thoughts are frantically screaming to be released from my head like a dozen angry bulls trapped behind an iron gate.

Yeah. It’s like that.

First of all, I am finally coming to terms with what effort I need to put forth for this project- what amount of research and writing I need to do to for our exhibition. I have this chance to unleash my creativity and make the words I create into works of art. Because that’s how I see writing- not as words to be read on a page, but as if each word was a chance to imagine something beautifully visual. Visual art makes the decision for you but words let YOU imagine what visions are behind them. This astounds me.

Perhaps my tiny journal nearly full with lecture notes, stories, lists, quotes and meeting minutes from the past month and a half has inspired me. I flip through it during awkward silent times when I am too early for class or waiting for someone in a public space by myself, and when I squint my eyes each handwritten letter appears to me like a piece of art. Collectively, all of the letters form my mnemosyne atlas, my cultural memory.

Aby Warburg's Mnemosyne Atlas (http://www.medienkunstnetz.de/works/mnemosyne/)

The words on the journal pages and in my head are little bits of my personal archaeology. And for some reason, in the past couple of days I’ve realized how much I’ve been fighting to change my own narrative. Trying to create for myself a new heritage, a new style, new likes/dislikes- in order to make the most of my life, to try new things. But as I’ve come to realize, even trying new things and setting new goals can lead you in a circle right back to where you started, right back to a  point where God says “Hey-ya, remember me?

It’s only when I stop fighting who I am that I start to see how wonderful all those things are that I was trying to reinvent. My tights will never be pants. My pants will always be a little bit too baggy and drag on the ground. My eyeliner will never be European enough and my taste in music will always be a little bit reminiscent of my senior year of high school and Austin City Limits festivals. I may never understand contemporary art, despite my masters degree in the theoretical study of it. I like to anti-socially hide behind my ipod earbuds and escape into my own musical soundtrack when I walk absolutely anywhere. I will never get tired of watching Amelie. Regardless of how cliché it is to have Amelie as your favorite movie.

It’s hard work ignoring your own personal narrative. Mine consists of me being an American in Europe. I accept this. My mnemosyne atlas, my collection of artifacts, is beautiful. So I think I’ll start allowing myself to stick out.

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