Thursday, January 31, 2008

So, what medium do you work in?

I have found over the years that small talk in social situations amoung non-artists have begun to be a bit awkward over the years. Inevitably the conversation amoung two strangers ends up wiht the question, "So, what do you do?" The question is simple and innocent enough at first glance, but unfortunately the conversation usually ends uncomfortable with a blank, bewildered look on thier face and an awkward moment of silence as I give up trying to explain away thier puzzled look. I am a sculptor, who hasn't really sculpted an object in many, many years.

I am an artist working in audio and video installation and consider myself, a sculptor. It has been a long time since the age of the traditional artisan of the Renaissance, so why is it so hard to get past the traditional stereotypes of genre after several hundred years and almost as many movements (as it seems at times). I can no longer see an advantage or reason to classify the various arts into genres and yet I do it myself. I claim myself a sculptor because I am sculpting space, environment and experience, but I do not use the traditional materials or tools of a sculptor. In a generation of artists who are using any and all mediums to create their work, as well as adpopting new mediums all the time, perhaps it is no longer useful to claim one genre or another.

It was not that long ago that everything that was not painting was lumped into sculpture and now I am seeing a similiar phenomenon with 'New Media'. What is the problem with calling it art?

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