color Beyond Kandinsky: Final Thoughts


The year 2011 marks the centennial of the publication of Wassily Kandinsky's classic text, On the Spiritual in Art. Inspired by this anniversary, this project set out to explore the place of the spiritual in contemporary art and to propose a challenge to the current devaluation of the inner life that prevails within the art world in our market-driven era.

Beginning on Wednesday, March 30th, 2011, a ten-day virtual symposium moderated by Taney Roniger and Eric Zechman was held in this forum. The symposium closed on the evening of Friday, April 8th. Below is the full record of the proceedings.

Panelists invited to participate were: Suzanne Anker, Laura Battle, Connie Beckley, Anney Bonney, Deirdre Boyle, Nathaniel Dorsky, Jeff Edwards, James Elkins, Max Gimblett, Tom Huhn, Atta Kim, Roger Lipsey, Enrique Martinez Celaya, Joseph Nechvatal, Daniel Siedell, Charlene Spretnak, David Levi Strauss, Alan Wanzenberg, and Pawel Wojtasik. For participant biographies and other project details, please visit our site: www.beyondkandinsky.net.


SYMPOSIUM SCHEDULE

March 30th–April 1st: Session I: The Spiritual Then and Now

April 2nd–April 3rd: Session II: The Changing Shape of Art

April 4th-5th: Session III: Art and Its Audience

April 6th–April 7th: Session IV: The Artist in Society

April 8th: Conclusions


CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD COMPLETE SYMPOSIUM TRANSCRIPT

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Final Thoughts

At the end of the Symposium these somewhat random thoughts occurred to me:

The value of silence—what was not said was as important as that which was.

We use the word “spiritual”—it is so painfully inadequate, even after so much clarifying. I am reminded of a Zen master who said one needs to wash their mouth every time one utters the word “Zen” or “Buddha”.

What was the purpose and effect of the symposium? Was it to re-affirm the presence of spirituality in art in the forum of ideas? It certainly could accomplish that. But perhaps another objective could be to bring about a spiritual state within individuals and society at large. For that, a kind of “via negativa,” a way of unlearning might be necessary

Finally, for no particular reason, here is a quote from Bruce Nauman, a real Zen master:

I HAVE QUICK HANDS MY MIND IS ALERT

I HOLD MY BODY READY FOR INSPIRATION

ANTICIPATION ANY SIGN RESPIRATION

ANY SIGH I THINK NEITHER AHEAD NOR

BEHIND READY BUT NOT WAITING NOT

ON GUARD NOT PREPARED

Thank you Taney and Eric.

3 comments:

  1. Center of all centers, core of cores,
    almond self-enclosed, and growing sweet--
    all this universe, to the furthest stars
    all beyond them, is your flesh, your fruit.

    Now you feel how nothing clings to you;
    your vast shell reaches into endless space,
    and there the rich, thick fluids rise and flow.
    Illuminated in your infinite peace,

    a billion stars go spinning through the night,
    blazing high above your head.
    But in you is the presence that
    will be, when all the stars are dead.


    - Rilke Maria Rainer

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  2. I really have respect for this blog and I would like to be a contributor

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello, Roman Serra. Please do contribute your thoughts!

    ReplyDelete