So, I figure that most of the people reading this already know me, at least for the time being. However, on the chance that some of you don’t know me or in the hopes that more people will read this in the future, I have decided to dedicate this week’s post to a little background on me. I hold a Master’s Degree in the history of art from University College London, which is located in (you guessed it!) London, England. I spent the past year there and got a wonderful opportunity to travel, experience life in another country, and take part in a very intense yearlong program. I studied art from a theoretical perspective and I’m pretty sure I died a little on the inside to be replaced by (mostly) dead, (mostly) French and German philosophers. My favorites include Walter Benjamin, Gilles Deleuze, and Michel Foucault, though there were many others (theory slut, I know). However, I’m originally from Upstate New York and went to Cornell for my undergraduate degree where I double majored in art history and archaeology (I had dreams of being Indiana Jones, and did actually go on an archaeological dig in Israel). I have been living in New York City, specifically Brooklyn, for two and a half years now and decided it was high time to write an art blog!
Originally, I wanted to be an artist. From as far back as I can remember it was always an artist or a dancer. I’m too tall to be a dancer and lack the passion to practice as compulsively as is necessary. I realized that one pretty early on. Also, I’m pathetically clumsy…I bump into everything, trip, etc…it’s not cute. Art, on the other hand, hung on through high school. But, I decided that I lack the proper depth of talent and a truly creative impulse. When I learned that I could write about art, it was like a new door opened. I was good at writing, theory made sense, and all of the visual, aesthetic, and symbolic pictures that I saw in everyday life I could translate and share through words. That’s how I arrived here. Art theory, art criticism, art history, these are all mine; a visual world made verbal, a translation from the eye to the intellect. I would like to share that with anyone who wants to read about it. I have many art related obsessions that I plan to explore here. Water towers, for one…I’m not quite sure where the fascination lies there. Maybe it’s the pure outdatedness of them (wonderful words like archaic, obsolete, obsolescence, and antiquated come to mind…and thesaurus.com) and the fact that they still stand tall on many NYC buildings, proud and unaware of their irrelevance. Maybe it’s the round shape among all the square façades and sharp edges, I don’t know. Another obsession is museum gift shops. I’d like to name that post “Exit Through the Gift Shop” but that would be a blatant plagiarism of Banksy, who brings me to another future blog post: graffiti. It’s everywhere, it’s been written about, but I’m gonna write about it too! The LES is covered in exquisite graffiti and public art and there are so many things to talk about there. There will also be many last minute exhibition reviews, which I will post about a week before the show closes because that is usually when I manage to go. Maybe some guest blogs from colleagues, and so on.
I hope anyone who stops by my page comes back soon and enjoys reading what I have to say and maybe decides to give museums and art a fighting chance since for so many people, they feel dusty and out-of-date. You’ll all have to forgive me if at times I become a bit theatrical and melodramatic. A year can change a girl. This past year was one of those for me. I moved to a different country, made a whole new group of friends from all over the world, maybe fell in love (?), and studied theory that shifted my way of thinking, derailing comfortable trains of thought forever and stretching my mind to the point that I physically hurt for the first two weeks…Now, I am back and it’s almost like nothing has changed. Same city, same type of dead-end restaurant job, same apartment, same routine, and yet, everything has changed. I feel like, for the past year, I have been sprinting up a hill that culminated in a month of intensity as I finished my dissertation. I lost my breath and all of my feeling. I reached the top, handed in my paper, and was done. Then, I came home and crashed. I fell to the earth gasping for air, dying, numb. Travel was over, I was out of money, I moved back to the city that had been my self-made home before the past year. I stood up on my mountain but was still bent in two, gasping for air. My lungs began to ache and my legs burned. The pain lessened but the lack of severity only made it more excruciating. I was in the exact same place I had started. A place I loved in a job I can no longer stand. I’m searching for the dream job, something in my field requiring at least a functioning brain. I feel like a different person but have come back to an apparently unchanged world. My moment of success as I topped my mountain has been shadowed as I look beyond the view and see another peak before me that I now must climb….like I said, melodramatic. Some might even say self-aggrandizing or masturbatory, but (what-ho!), I’ll try to reign it in, promise. To wrap up, here is a picture of me, isn’t that nice. Next week will bring more art stuff!
(Photo credit to Sneha Sarcar, sorry for the lo-res quality)
P.S. ECLO stands for “Eyes Closed Legs Open” which is my own personal, cynical take on the place of women in art history, mainly the female nude. I thought that it might give people the wrong impression on what this blog is about, which I why I shortened it to the acronym. More of that to follow in future posts, weeeeeee!