Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A Life In Art

I really don't have a problem with (say) Tracey Emin not being able to paint or draw. So what? When she declares that there's no separation between her life and her art, she reveals herself to be a true artist. So, if she can do it, why can't all of us?

It occurs to me I will probably never have enough room to display all my stuff. And it occurs to me I want to display My Life Of Crap. I want it out there. In public. Maybe just for a week or two (I'm not that much of an egotist). I'd been to see the Chris Marker exhibition at the Whitechapel gallery. He'd died recently and I thought the exhibition was like a celebration of his life, with his films, photos, travel guides but also letters, notebooks, sketches. This is how I want my stuff displayed in a similarly sized gallery. A huge space to display my life's work: paintings, drawings, sculptures*, films, photographs, sure, but also newspaper clippings, books and magazines, records and CDs, posters, clothes, toys, bric-a-brac. But I actually want to be alive when this happens, and curate it. Everything will be for sale (there would be barngains galore).

The idea of preserving an artist's or writer's room exactly as it was, ie Charles Dickens' or Thomas Hardy's study or Lawrence of Arabia's house, is how we should all be remembered. I've written about this before; that a gravestone is essentially a boring, impersonal reminder of a person's life, and far more intimate and relevant would be a recreation of the dead person's living room or bedroom with all their stuff. This is us now, right? Our stuff? (Even if it's digital stuff, it's still stuff.)

*Someone will have to recreate the giant plug switch I made out of leaves and grass and the huge cardboard light switch, the mini cinemas, palace of mirrors, etc.

Previously on Barnflakes:
Head in the Clouds
The Museum of Everyone


Al 'Salaam' Warda said...

So your life's installation will be in a dingy Crystal Palace flat, they'll be no room to move as you have so much stuff. It'll draw a few weirdos like yourself - I can see Robert, Rowan (out of sympathy) and myself turning up just for the free refreshments (there will be refreshment won't there?) or for the post party exhibition and hopefully as you know us well get something for free? It'll draw crowds as the word gets around there's an installation you cannot see, crowds will be pushing and shoving to get in and this will cause mayhem, you'll be arrested for exhibiting without a fire risk assessment, and someone will be smoking and the whole lot will go up in smoke?
Yeah I'll be there

Barnaby said...

Very droll.

No it won't be in flat, will be in a big, spacious art gallery. You will get free refreshments and 'something for free' but it will cost you £15 to get in.