What is the value of an idea? What does it mean to know something? Is it better to share ideas or have it as your asset? Both methodologies exist simultaneously in the mind if you think of the internet and the market economy.
Maybe not every idea should be followed, but maybe every idea should be had. Does having a routine encourage ideas? Or is it better to be interrupted?
Between the first and second year of the MFA program at GSA, each student puts in a proposal for their studio the next year. In mine, I listed needing a space “cozy enough to welcome individuals to practice hospitality.” Here I can play a super host and am glad you received my invitation. The space here is different than the typical museum or gallery and we are outside the typical practiced rules and behaviors in those spaces. Here we get to define how we behave. And I was to invite you to share ideas. Here, outside these structures, you and I can exchange and collaborate, and more importantly play.
When I was talking to a friend about offering up my studio as an exchanging place for ideas I talked about having ice tea, what we in the American south would just call tea, and lemonade to share. “Great! I can make an Arnold Palmer,” was exclaimed as their face filled with joy. An Arnold Palmer is a drink of 50/50 tea and lemonade named after the Golfer when he ordered a drink that he usually made at home while on the PGA tour in the 1960’s.
Jeremy Deller sees artist divided into two categories one manufacture the physical material that is used to represent power and wealth and the other collects and shares stories. That second kind of artist can often be inviting us to play or engage in some way. That seems to be what is at stake here, a form of idea engagement. All ideas are welcome. Should the NHS focus more on preventative care? What is the best way to open a bottle? Is a paper airplane a nostalgic form or a functional sculpture that expresses itself best in space and time? What role does affective labor resulting of delight have to do with the exchange of the motion of your arm and the movement of the plane?
I’ve been getting up early lately. Recently partially because of this, I was watching youtube. Over an hour I was watching separate octopuses navigate different puzzles and tests. Each proved that this animal whose nervous system is different than ours is a multi-level problem solver. From what I understand their learning capabilities are based on the fact that there is no parental relationship. Once they are born, they are on their own. That being said they can learn from watch others even with a single example shown to them. Off the coast of Capri, the once solitary octopus interacts with others of the species. Younger octopuses are learning from older octopuses. Imagine in 10,000 years of this interaction how different it will be if they as a species also get the language virus like us having exchanges of ideas.