5 comments on “Can’t We All Just Get Along?

  1. As an art history grad who has worked on the previous 2 years’ CRL summer shows, I can definitely attest to the fact that acting as a curator of these shows is a truly thankless job. To fulfill the democratic ideas on which this collaboration was founded means that the curators are faced with the daunting job of trying to make some kind of sense out of lots of different ideas and styles of work by the increasing number of mfa students who want to participate in the shows. When these shows first started 5 years ago, I think there were 5 artists in each show which is a lot easier to handle rather than the 10+ artists now.

    In my own experience it was really hard coming up with a theme or title for the shows that could encompass all the works that were to be included. The last year’s were Fever and Shade, a rather tenious distinction between cool analytical/formalist work and bright over the top/narrative work. The division was very flimsy, but it was the best we could do considering all the different works and of course the artists’ summer schedules.

    I had many a talk with Andy about last year’s experience and the problems that we encountered. I thought that Andy’s idea of deciding on the themes of making it together and alone before he approached the artists was a brillant way to get around this problem of a theme or title that doesn’t make much sense once all the work is put in the gallery. The only way to truly make a great cohesive show is to jury the exhibition or to invite specific mfa students to participate which goes against the whole idea of the summer shows.

    The CRL summer shows are about experimentation and collaboration, not about making the most killer show of the year. Whether the shows are a success or a failure critically, the experience that both the curators, artists, writers and everyone else involved with the shows gains is the most important thing as we are students after all! The CRL is a university art gallery for the art AND art history department and I think them providing a safe place for experimentation in allowing art history grad students take over for the summer gets to the essence of what the CRL is and should be about.

    Since both Making it Alone and Making it Together were conceived of in dialog with each other, I’m interested to see what you think of this show after the next one opens and how the two function together.


  2. Well Salvador you have generated more light (generating info about the back side of an exhibition) and heat (warm and hot) discussions about what we all do and care about in our small town than anyone else in awhile . Good doing and seeing.

  3. Alex,
    It almost makes me want to write three reviews. One for each show and then one considering both.

    Your comment made this past week worth it. I was starting to think that everyone was just seeing me as some kinda asshole looking for attention. I mean, I like the attention, but in the end this thing is not about me.


  4. The idea of 3 reviews, might not be a bad idea as rather than overarching themes, the shows are divided into two basic ideas: artists that submit work they did alone in their studio for the first show and then artists who chose someone to collaborate with for the second show. The first show couldn’t have happened with out the second or vice versa. Granted this is my perception of it and you would have to run it by Andy and the rest of the curators to see if this is how they thought of it.

    While your initial review did offend and upset me, I think the discussion that has come out of it has been really interesting and I think beneficial for everyone involved. Don’t stop writing what you think and I’m a firm believer in being honest and upfront in saying stuff is good or crap, but I think you just have to really think through those judgements and make each judgement an informed one.

  5. I think I liked the discussion because it was beneficial for those NOT involved as well.

    Stallone as Judge Dredd, “I am the law!”
    Unfortunately, I don’t have a helmet and a blaster. So I try my best to be informed and am working on communicating exactly what I’m thinking and in what context. I try.

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