The View from Here A call for artists to collaborate in a time of pandemic
Call for artists “Take an object, do something to it, do something else to it (repeat).” – Jasper Johns.
Now that “social distancing” has crash-landed in all of our vocabularies, it is important for us to find ways to find and nurture real human connections even as current circumstances push us apart. So many people all over the world are stuck in isolation right now, but at the same time we can share that experience as an international community and take the opportunity to show one another a little bit of the world as we are experiencing it.
With the world in “lockdown”, the Elisabeth Jones Art Center is proposing a project that makes and nurtures connections between artists, sharing a little of the world as they see it in a creative reinterpretive exchange. Through our national and international connections, we will introduce two artists to each other. The artists share with one another something of the view from here—the world as they are experiencing it in this chaotic time—each taking that view and responding with a re-seeing, a reinterpretation, in the spirit of the Jasper Johns quote. The finished work will be exhibited at the Elisabeth Jones Art Center June 17, 2020.
One of the pleasures of being a creative person is meeting and making things with other creative people. And we can still do that! What’s important is not in what we have lost in proximity and comfort, but that we continue to explore new approaches to art making, and learning what other creative people are thinking and how they are doing things. In this time of lockdown, there is an added layer of difficulty. But even in our isolation we can still make amazing art together, communicating by making and shaping artwork, the exchange itself an exploration of possibilities in expressing ideas, feelings, and points of view by artistic process.
If you are interested in taking part, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org!
How the project works
Two artists are paired up. In this pairing they will create artwork in the spirit of Jasper Johns. First, one artist electronically shares the view from here: some representation of the way they are seeing the world right now, shared in whatever way they see fit. Then, their collaborator morphs and changes that image, sharing a different way of seeing it, reinterpreting and altering it.
Here is an example of how the exchange might proceed:
(Take an object)
1) Artist number one, through prose, drawing or painting, describes “The View from Here”.
2) This is sent electronically to artist number two, as text, a digital file, a photograph, etc.
(do something to it)
3) Artist number two creates some kind of interpretation based on what artist #1 has sent them, for example, a black and white sketch using the information from #1.
4) This is electronically sent back to artist number one
(do something else to it)
5) Artist number one adds color and changes to the image, adding to it.
6) This is sent electronically to artist number two
(do something else to it)
7) Artist number two transfers the electronic image and makes a real world painting.
8) In the interest of symmetry and sharing control, this pair now switches roles, and artist number two produces the initial “The View from Here.” The electronic exchange will continue with the artists exchanging tasks. Artist number one will paint the final artwork in this second exchange.
This is an example of one way that this could work using Jasper Johns’ quote as a point of departure. The key words here are POINT OF DEPARTURE. Other ways of working will certainly be accepted, and are encouraged, as long as the process is in the spirit of the quote by Jasper Johns. It is not required that it be painting; it could also include sculpture, assemblage, and installation. This exchange can go back and forth however many times the pair wants. What’s important is that there is a back and forth exchange ending in a realized physical artwork in the spirit of Jasper Johns’ “do something to it.” The final work will be exhibited at the Elisabeth Jones Art Center.
Exhibition scheduled for June 17, 2020, pandemic permitting.