26 June 2006

How We Spend Our Time

On Saturday 14 May I took part in a Group Crit at Stand Assembly studios, where myself and five other artists presented and spoke about our work. This was post Day-to-Day Data and I presented the premise that having been out of university for a full five years - I had reached a point where I felt I needed to review and reflect on all the 'work' I had since produced. Simultaneously I challenged myself and the others to evaluate just how-on-earth five years could have disappeared so quickly.

Niki Russell presented his work to the group and a discussion arose about what compels us to make 'work' and what motivates us. What tactics we use and what rules we set to force ourselves to be productive. And also how in an ideal world we would want to spend our time. We may think that in this ideal world we would choose to do nothing, to sit on a beach or lie in bed all day. But this may turn out to be a nightmare, which is why we 'work' instead. We discussed:

- The idea that the artist is always working, that they have no time off, no rest bite and they experience constant guilt through times of lack of production. Artists do not have 'spare time'.

- This lead into the idea of a 'life-long project', work that can sustain the artist until they die.

These ideas appal and attract me in the same measure. I am a self-confessed work-a-holic that hates working.