After Critical Issues I wrote some emails and did administrative duties and prepared for a visitor to my studio.
Wednesday, November 24, 2016
This person is the editor in chief of a long-standing and important art criticism publication based in Brooklyn. As usual, I had no idea of what to expect. Because I only had a half an hour between the end of Critical Issues and my studio visit, I ordered some sushi on the telephone and ran to pick it up right after class.
I wasn’t certain when the person would arrive, but I knew that we would have some time to chat because he was expected as the visiting lecturer for that evening at 8 PM, while our studio visit was at 7 PM. I hastily ate my sushi and miso soup in a chair outside of my studio, as not to taint the odor — or lack thereof — in the room.
The visitor, a diminutive man in his mid-50s, swept into the room like the Tasmanian Devil from the old Warner Bros. cartoons. He was a swirling blur of twitters (the vocal kind), anecdotes and opinion. He was thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining, and I allowed myself to simply listen to his stories and suggestions. In actuality, he helped me think of my presentation in new ways and encouraged me to try some new configurations for my videos.
This person was very old-school in his references and thinking. I appreciate his deep knowledge of art and cinema, and he made some insightful suggestions in terms of what I should explore, in terms of art cinema and directors.
After the studio visit, I went downstairs to the common room where the artist lectures are held. I’m pleased that I didn’t miss this event, as I was loudly called out for my presence by the lecturer. He was very time sensitive and answered just the right amount of questions so that we could enjoy each others’ company at a bar after the lecture.
The group ended up at a barbecue joint on 125th St. near the Hudson river. The lecturer opened a bar tab upon which everyone appreciatively ordered drinks. I wanted to make some sort of contribution to the group’s enjoyment, so I opened a tab and bought four orders of 13 chicken wings each which, fortunately, was ample food for the group.
Humorously enough, although the visitor didn’t refer much to the content of my videos during our visit, he did bring attention to the fact that certain parts of my body were exposed in the videos, in front of many of my classmates and colleagues at the bar. I was surprised and a bit amused when my classmates turned around in shock. It was a nice attention grabber, and a nice gesture to pique interest.
Incidentally, I deeply appreciate some of the suggestions that the visitor made. One in particular: stacking the monitors in a vertical position and placing them in a corner, is one that the visitor made me promise I would try and that I will most certainly execute because it sounds like an excellent idea.