Thursday, September 07, 2006

What & Why

Dispersed Interrogations is a title recently draped over an activity I’ve pursued for years but now identify as something discreet enough to warrant a name. A practice can be ubiquitous and ultimately invisible because of its omnipresence. The fish doesn’t see the water. As an artist I’ve frequently mulled what exactly I’m doing, as my mercurial interests have run in many directions and many mediums. I’ve often groped to identify a common thread. This title attempts to parse that blizzard of activity to find some commonality.

“Dispersed” collects my diverse interests with one word. It refers to disciplines that are remote from each other in subject matter as well as activities that are geographically remote from each other. Examples of the former range from art, geology and WWII strategic bombing to game theory; while the latter refers to interactions out in the world beyond sites like galleries or books to include public art, the web, the physical landscape and the spaces between us all. As a “student” of the visual world I find myself looking at curiosities that point out less perceptible connections between this range of phenomena. I don’t believe this act of observation is ever innocent- it is crossed by all kinds of power relations ranging from my personal history to the inherent rift between active and passive states embodied by observer and observed. “Interrogations” is an acknowledgement of these power relations. It is also an effort to describe a level of analysis slightly deeper than just topical observation or reportage; picking a bit deeper.

This website is a manifestation of this larger habit. By being online, it is obviously in a “site” distant from other areas in which I work. It also affords the indulgence of documenting all the roving thoughts I may have which don’t find a home in other states. The challenge becomes one of having notes of value vs. being enabled to record inchoate thoughts that would be best left dispersed and un-interrogated.


Blogger joie said...

Curiously, what would you like from your devotees? Are you interrogating yourself? And if so, why publish? I'm still trying to decide how the blogo-whatever makes the world a better place, not just more cynical or narcissistic. Help me out here.

8:35 PM

Blogger Rupert Nesbitt said...

Good questions- There's a single, connected answer to all of them. I would agree that the blogo-whatever should be questioned about it's value. Indeed spewing random thoughts is the narcissistic side and the endless easy-route of criticism-as-content is just more cynicism. As an artist I'm always aware of questions of the utility or value of what I'm doing. By interrrogation, I'm implying a relationship of power is involved in the act of looking at the world and thus I am interrogating my own act as well. The specific things that I'm choosing to look at are invested by some form of power as well, and often a slightly obscure or counter-intuitive form. We're all trapped in it. So... what I would like- is to help generate a culture of closer observation of the systems we're operating within. This needn't be purely negative- there's an extraordinary beauty also to be seen in the mess of interconnections hanging the world together. From observation can come awareness can come change (?)...

6:05 PM


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