On analysing or critiquing one's own work:
I think being critical is one of the big things Graduate School teaches you. I always resisted it when I was in school, I found it so stifling. Now, with some distance, I really see it’s lasting effect on me. For better and worse, it is a part how I see and do everything. I think it often makes me really hard on things I see people making out in the world. But, I also see how it helps me to consider and push my own work.
Criticality is important, it’s something I think we are loosing as a flourishing, creative culture. I think when we make something we ought to know what it’s saying and doing in the world beyond being an act of expression, or something of beauty. If you are an artist you have to understand the context in which you are making something. It’s important to look at things with a critical eye. It’s how we make meaning and understand the world. It’s how we hold people accountable to the things they make, and say, and do. And, more importantly, it’s how we hold ourselves accountable for the mark we are leaving on the world with our creations.
Criticality is what helps us see beyond the aesthetics of something. And while I think beauty is important it can sometimes be a dead end and can keep you on the surface of something, which, in the end, isn’t that interesting to me. Beauty isn’t important if I can’t move beyond it to go deeper.
We are living in an interesting time where so many people are makers, calling themselves artists and curators. More so than ever before. It makes me want to hold tight to some sort of criticality. Perhaps this is antiquated of me. And who knows, maybe in forty years I will have come to see that as artists it’s not our job to be critical and all we need to do is just make the art. But, I doubt it. I think as artists we have a responsibility.