My appreciation for artists who talk about their practices with enthusiasm and curiosity, and are able to articulate their references and ideas, only intensifies. Last Tuesday, I heard the Scottish artist, Dave Sherry, present his work at the Tuesday Talks series at the Whitworth Gallery. Before his lecture, I poked around Sherry’s web site a little. The performances seemed so inconsequential, and drawings and documentation so haphazard, I was skeptical. Is this just another (white) jokey Conceptualist skating by on a boy-genius aura?, I thought. Fortunately, Sherry gave a great talk, interspersing images of his own work with historical reference points that lent his slight gestures the credibility of an established lineage, which includes Ceal Floyer, David Hammons, Bruce Nauman and Martin Creed. Sherry’s talk was well organized and extensive. He also went above the call of duty and conducted a live performance. It was short (maybe 5 minutes?) but with its Beckett-influenced repetition and absurdity, it demonstrated Sherry’s physical mastery and endurance. Learn more about Sherry at his site. I’m especially partial to “Looking through Tom Cruise’s Eyes” (2005) (rollover the thumbnails).
I’m also really impressed with Joseph Kosuth’s Meet the Artists lecture at the Hirshhorn Museum (mp4). Many artists present their work with only rote descriptions (“This slide is of a project I did in 1988”). Descriptions are often necessary, but without a narrative to stitch it together, the lecture can become soulless and awful. Kosuth, on the other hand, presented his work way of an astute art history and theory paper. It’s dense and I’d recommend it — if you can devote an hour of your full attention.
So I’m really excited to check out Verissage.TV art television.