Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 7 September 2006

Bricolage Statement

Stuff & Nonsense

A Bricolage of Imaginary Landscapes

Exhibition Statement Rant

I’ve always been in danger of becoming the type of artist that I don’t like.  These pieces are made up of things found around my house.  The artist in me keeps collections of little items that someone else might have thrown out a long time ago.  Believe it or not I did have sand, a bunch of tiny pins and fishing paraphernalia lying around.  Well, carefully stored in tiny bottles or plastic tackle boxes; and I don’t fish. But back to the task at hand – I specifically wanted to do something repetitive and calming so that I could think. 


The following is the genesis of this work:


I sat behind the desk and felt the impact of his words, “If you’re not informed by art history, then your work is unintellectual and sophomoric.”  Then came the familiar sensation washing over the inside of my skull and down my spine.  Autodidactic, as are a lot of my skills, is the form of self-control I drew upon to prevent myself from giving him an unintellectual and sophomoric thrashing about the head. The words crawled under my skin to aggravate in a new way issues that began soon after the middle school teacher in Bright Shiny America asked me if I knew what it meant that I was reading at a 12th grade level.  Um… what?!  I believe the mini-stroke feelings started then or was that when that I began to develop the anti-thrashing constraints?  When did it happen that artists weren’t the ones who decided what art is?  Why is it that when you talk a lot people think you’re an intellectual?  When did the ability to regurgitate someone else’s ideas become the hallmark for creativity?  I think I have had so many of those little blood vessels pop in my head that nowadays I actually have to write phone numbers down to remember them.  Pisses me off. 


Still not getting to the point am I?  See what I mean?  Mini-strokes…


Statement in a nutshell:  Many people look at an artist’s handiwork and say, “I [my four year old] could do that.”  The question is, “Could you/Would you – as an adult?” The artist takes the time and effort to make something  – just because.


  1. […] you exactly where my anger happens in my skull and where it goes from there.  I describe it in the statement.  It goes along with a physical therapist professor from FIU making the observation in a lecture […]


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