point-form journal

angel syndrome's picture

I've been up until 3am for the past few days, reading a few dozen academic articles on site-specific art and criteria to determine what defines it as site-specific and all I can really say is that I now :

- Really, really hate art institutions for limiting artistic potential, creating absolutely meaningless discourse and analysis.

- Really dislike my studies

- Therefore, see no real meaning in my current studies as an art and film historian

- At the same time, I find my drive to become an artist/curator back, since I firmly believe art in our era belongs outside the institution, and I want the public to reclaim art as their own and educate themselves on it

- At the same time, what the fuck purpose does art serve anyways

Conclusions on what I need to do :

- Focus more on art creation, particularly in the media of our time (net art, street art and film), and focus on ways to create discourse between artist/curator/viewer, and how to potentially act as all three within my creative process

- Stop being shocked at the stupidities of academia

- Potentially leave civilization to live on a self-sufficient farm, or in a monastery somewhere (most tempting possibility)

- Finish this fucking annotated bibliography before tuesday (most likely short-term possibility) and not sleep


i also have a new job that gives me more hours, four finals coming up, a now-homeless boyfriend who's addicted to heroin, a photography job tomorrow morning

plus i'm leaving to new orleans for 5 days this week which means that i have 5 less days to do all my schoolwork

i'm also really stressed because i need to save a sufficient amount of money to move out within the next 9 months or so

how to breathe


jeff's picture

On the importance of art...

I think you would really enjoy Camille Paglia's new book Glittering Images. When I was at her book launch party in NYC, she took the art world to task for isolating itself in a useless cocoon of terminology and abstraction in a society that has removed arts education as a foundational part of core instruction.

A quote from a recent interview: "One of the aims of my book is to speak directly to that alienated public and to demonstrate the spirituality of art and the artistic mission — a theme which has gotten little attention during the long drought of postmodernism, with its cheap little ironies and gimmicky conceptualism. I want to promote the introduction of art history in primary schools and to convince the general public that, even in a period of economic crisis, arts funding is an absolute necessity at the federal, state, and local levels. Every advanced civilization must nourish the arts. But artists, if they expect support, must stop behaving like snobbish elitists, contemptuous of the beliefs and values of mainstream Americans. That pose was still fresh when the abstract expressionists were struggling for attention in the late 1940s, but it’s totally passé now."

Hard to find a perfect quote in context, but that's close. So, a background in arts history, even if it doesn't lead to a pursuit in that as a career, is a solid foundation to pursue other things. I don't quite understand gay Republicans, but in certain situations there is a benefit to trying to change a system from within.

College majors aren't necessarily a career path, but an education that you can use to springboard yourself toward other things. I've known VPs of marketing that were French literature majors, etc., etc., so it's not like you're stuck on a certain path based on what you study. Of course, if you rather a different major, try and switch.

I often think of the possibility of living in the middle of nowhere, which is ironic, as I always live in huge urban areas. But I only do extremes. I can do nothing or everything, which is why suburbia doesn't work for me. It's like living close to interesting things, but then not doing them, which is too strange.

Stress and money are always a balancing act. I work as a contractor, which always means the money can disappear at any time and you're looking for a job. And, depending on how long I was on contract, I may not even be able to collect unemployment, etc., but I've found that stress never makes more money appear, so I try to keep them separated. If you know when you want to move out, and how much money you'd need by then to feel safe moving out, then you also know how much you'd need to be saving per month, etc., and then it just becomes a boring plan to execute.

You'll be fine...

Hey, Sexy Lady! Oppan Gangnam Style...

Bosemaster42's picture


The education you receive is what's important. Unfortunately, this includes some of the more mundane attributes that come along with the major you're undertaking. It's kind of similiar to some friends of mine who attended music schools. Learning theory is the last thing they want to do, and apparently it sucks, but it's part of the bigger picture.
A monastery huh? Oh, no, I'd be too tempted to walk around without my robe, plus I hate sandals. I could handle the farm life though.
New Orleans is cool. I had a great time down there and the food is really good too.
Your boyfriend is officially homeless now? No surprise there, it tends to happen to most Heroin addicts. My friend was homeless for years before he was finally able to get a room in a shared house. He was clean for three years and now he's using again. He stopped going to his clinic(long story) withdrew from methadone and used shortly afterward. Such a steep hill to climb.

javier's picture


Art institutions' purpose is to teach you the basics of art and techniques, skills, etc. but when you graduate then you should use any method you feel appropiate for your work.

angel syndrome's picture

I study art history which is

I study art history which is not even techniques and skills, just rhetoric and bullshit debate about the nature of things.

elph's picture

And that's what it may be...

But if one persists in such pre-judgment, it becomes a virtual guarantee that that's what it will turn out to be... for you!

I could be a bit too naive... but I suspect that the course would not have remained in the standard art curricula were it truly without value.

angel syndrome's picture

I've been studying art (and

I've been studying art (and art history) for three years now. It isn't a "pre-judgement".

I don't think it's truly without any value but given my mortality... It kind of is.