Content seems to govern artworks currently, mostly on socio-political or identity driven narratives. Exhibitions are framed around meaningful contemporary content. The forms these subjects are represented through, however, tend to fall back onto standard formats.
The aesthetics of installations and audio visual displays are often familiar and default.
The act of making – the methods employed, are also unchallenged in general. Perhaps it is not enough to say that a film is shot on an iphone when the imagery and form of that imagery is pretty much unidentifiable and not any different from any video camera with HD. Just ease of use of an iphone seems lazy as a concept?
The imagery shot in war zones does not rethink at all the problems of seduction that the often large format imagery it is conveyed through – these documentary images in art galleries are cast into the realm of aesthetics and that is an uneasy realm to portray suffering in.
This is on my mind, these are content laden times but the forms need to inform the work of these times much more than it is. The form and the method are the bedrock to tackle the content.
My intention is a step back (a little) from the social/political/environmental concerns being cast as art. Also to loosen the ties to the endless production of cause and effect narratives about our societal constructs, to step back into what we can begin to understand of the very mechanisms that produces our truths, often through these hallucinatory mediums we are so seduced by (film and photography). These mediums act as the purveyors of reflexive consciousness if used at their best (but they rarely are they used at their best).
It feels urgent that we must heal the world and society, has it become the work of art to do this? Is that the correct context?
If I reflect on what I think is shaping up the world right now it is the theatre that is being played out, being issued from the minds of certain autocrats. So my concern is less for the issues that art has aligned itself too, the subjects of identity, misogyny, torture, slavery, extinction that need to be addressed politically – through infrastructure, if humankind is going to evolve more effectively, but in terms of making an artwork I want form to tip the balance of over-laden content.
Obviously art can not actually solve any of these issues, only point at them – but it can evoke thought about the nature of thought. Perhaps it seems like an empty side step to an obscure subject of consciousness that not will not heal the world- but until we understand the mind what will we understand? Minds that will not accept the scientific proof are standing in our way?