It’s a pretty hot day in Manhattan. I’m currently seated at the corner of Grand Street and West Broadway, waiting for my wife to finish up an appointment nearby. I’ve been wandering around Soho, finding new joints to walk into and check out. So far I’ve purchased a candle for our design studio (Baies, a personal reference to a previous working arrangement), three coffees, a chocolate chip cookie, and the Summer edition of the Paris Review. Earlier, I reached out to Galen asking if there were any “Art” or “Design” publications worth checking out these days. I felt like I already knew the answer I’d receive before he got back to me.
As I walked around Soho, I couldn’t help but think:
There are very few people in the world putting out meaningful artistic works!
There are very few people in the world putting out important artistic works!
I finished my 3rd coffee while passing in front of the Judd Foundation’s Spring St. location.
Throughout my life, I’ve been cultivating a deep appreciation for art, its constituent practices, and its sister expressions, and feel (only a little) sympathetic to arguments made in favor of the inherent subjective value of art as a person’s self expression, but on the other hand, I want to know what’s important, what’s meaningful, what’s beautiful with respect to the grander tracts of time, to most of the histories of the world, the histories that end up compounding over time, long after I’m dead, etc.
I’m wondering what the world would be like if there were only 5 artists at any one given time, and all other art production was deemed illegal and punishable by death — what shape would art production take on?
I’m at an interesting point in my creative life: I’m more or less completely uninterested in starting serious aesthetic-artistic dialogues with other people (my contemporaries) outside of my immediate influence at the moment. I’m finding that unless I can draw someone into our extended creative universe, their work is meaningless for all intents and purposes.
When I reflect on this state of mind, I can’t arrive at any particular conclusions on why I feel this way. It’s easy to attribute this to age, ego, turning inward, rejecting the world, and a whole host of additional reactionary mindsets, but idk - maybe it’s not me, maybe it’s the world and the artists inhabiting and producing within it. Especially unfortunate, additionally I feel like the only meaningful works of art in this time require the vehicle of the corporation or other large body of people to produce. There will always be a deep tenderness and human sentimentality to a painting daubed by hand, but unless the artist in question is a friend of whom’s history I’m directly aware, what sticks in my mind, perhaps the mass-mind, is the mass produced. Unlike many creative people(?), I’m of the deep belief that mass production can be enacted in service of sublime ends…
I had a funny idea for a series of tweets yesterday, but I only posted one:
“Worldly” as in “has seen many worlds”
A primary theme I’m trying to drive home in some of my more recent work is that building an entire world is possible, and that anyone can do it. A sub-component of this theme is a set of ideas revolving around one’s embeddedness in the world, how the relationship(s) between one and the world(s) can be daubed like paint, smeared to obtain an intended effect, pushed into formation to build new organizations, new organisms, new computers, etc.
I’m not in the mindset to expand upon this, so I’ll leave it be.
On a completely unrelated note: A few days ago, maybe a week or so ago, I was asked to provide a little bit of input on the “resolution of the physical form” of an object a friend is producing. This request reminded me that I’ve been meaning to write up a formal list of the qualities a Tlonian object exudes.
Here’s a list I filled out in about one minute, sketched without thinking too much:
- A Tlon product is like an offering
- A Tlon product is like a locket
- A Tlon product is like a basic garment
- A Tlon product only makes use of color when it makes sense
- A Tlon product is uninterested in being implemented on wide-spectrum P3 colorspaces
- A Tlon product acknowledges that software is water in a long cycle
- A Tlon product acknowledges that hardware is a crystallization of earth’s limited natural resources and respectful of this fact
- A Tlon product contains recessed screens
- A Tlon product has five buttons max
- A Tlon product takes you through a hero’s journey
- A Tlon product is perfect insofar as it’s an expression of the global supply chain
- A Tlon product is black when it needs to stand apart from the world
- A Tlon product is white when it needs to showcase the passage of time (wear and tear)
- A Tlon product is green when it needs to exist outside
- A Tlon product is heavy, physically and otherwise
- A Tlon product considers sequences or series meaningfully
- A Tlon product can be used as a stand-in for the rosary
- A Tlon product is any other color when the designer feels like it, or the environment begs of it
- Tlon software is unfussy, like your favorite item of clothing
- Tlon software is based on the idea of a ream of paper, or a lattice in a garden
- Romina is the only designer at Tlon granted the ability to sign Tlon products
- Tlon products only feature the logo on the underbelly of products
- A Tlon product’s Tlon Corporation Logo is always the size of a fingerprint
- A Tlon product should be able to fit in a glovebox
- A Tlon product should be able to be used as a doorstop
- I shouldn’t have to think too much about a Tlon product
- I wouldn’t ask you to think too much about a Tlon product
- A Tlon product is at ease
- A Tlon product is not hand-crafted with love in a major city