Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The T Is Silent / Pep Talk

This text/email exchange between Caroline Favrot Lee and Yvonne was published on CFL's blog " The T Is Silent" and is titled "Pep Talk". I thought it was universal and touched on so many things, I asked her if I could re-run it here.

A text message on 1/19/10 4:19pm, continued via email.

CFL: Do you think making art is really that important?

YVONNE: Yes, i think art is more important than looking at/appreciating art sometimes.
Lots more to say about this though . . . What prompted this?

CFL: Larry Sultan's Memorial service - he was so convinced that art making was so damn important- it seems it was the only thing he was sure of- he questioned everything else obsessively - I was always in awe of this stake in the ground, this bedrock of faith. I often would sit in his class and wish I could feel as committed to making art, that I could Believe like he believed. I wish I could have the same faith in art making. I think maybe one human is only allowed so many strong convictions - maybe we only get one a lifetime and I have mine and he had his. Maybe that's just silly ... I can't tell at all -He said, days before he died that his life was important, he was lucky because he was able to touch culture, grazing it light like a feather and creating ripples well beyond his lifetime which had nothing to do w/ fame.

You think that's true? I hope so - he was so awesome, I'm really sad he's gone.

YVONNE: Never heard him speak about making art but to hear you talk about what you absorbed from his classes makes me excited to hear what he thought about it. I'd love to hear more, both what he thought and what you got from it. As for faith in what we do, I feel like that's a little different from why I think making art is important. definition of faith is a belief not based on 100% definitive proof, no? It's more like a hypothesis, that is, a guess based on certain information received. whole point is to get closer to what is true, hypotheses and faiths can be abandoned when and if appropriate.

Maybe he had proof? That making art (for him?) was certainly and without a doubt important. Sounds like it.

Also, I don't think we get one conviction a lifetime. Hope not. Hope I get many that continue to be revised as I get closer to things as they really are.

Wanna talk more about this. Miss you. Think it's awesome you're discussing this. Reminds me why I think you're dope. One of many reasons.

Hugs to you,

Read more on The T Is Silent HERE.


Thatcher Keats said...

As I was lamenting my place in the world of things last year, the painter Mark LaRiviere said to me "True, but on your deathbed you can say that you spent your life making pictures, and that is a very good thing".
A zen exercise, perhaps, but a better thing to say than "I made a killing in plastics" or some such.

Timothy Archibald said...

I'd love to make a killing in plastics. Why is photography more noble than plastics?