Disjunction occurs when things do not fit together well, or when they seem improperly, illogically, or irreconcilably joined.
Artist residencies bring together a group, usually small, of makers. Then there is time, sometimes seemingly endless, to practice, to make. There is time, too, to conference with others who are practicing in both similar and distinct media. Even those fellow residents who use the same media as oneself are doing it differently, individually. How is one’s work affected by this?
In my experience, group members, who, over a long period of time, exchange opinions regularly on each other’s work, come to develop a group vision. This is, on the one hand, dangerous to one’s artistic individuality and, on the other hand, gives way to work that one could never have realized singly.
Imagine the artist collective as a residency of indefinite length. Inevitable is the focusing in upon certain artistic goals over others. Perhaps we aim for surprise, or we aim for concision, or we aim for soft gestures. New members to the collective must then be sympathetic; or so persuasive as to establish a new vision.
Une société d’émetteurs ~ A society of transmitters
I live in a society of transmitters (being one myself): each person I meet or who writes to me, sends me a book, a text, an outline, a prospectus, a protest, an invitation to a performance, an exhibition, etc. The pleasure of writing, of producing, makes itself felt on all sides; but the circuit being commercial, free production remains clogged, hysterical, and somehow bewildered; most of the time, the texts and the performances proceed where there is no demand for them; they encounter, unfortunately for them, “relations” and not friends, still less partners; so that this kind of collective ejaculation of writing, in which one might see the utopian scene of a free society (in which pleasure would circulate without intermediary of money), reverts today to the apocalypse.
In places where you are not, I am unanchored and floating, unable to cast off the gaze of the Other.
In collectivity: a self-assuredness, albeit one where ‘self’ is not individual — and that may be precisely what makes our surety possible. We aren’t ourselves.
The artistic vision, when individual, can feel feeble, wants to aliment itself — needs to incorporate other(s) into a self in order to remain secure in the scrutiny of others. Ex-pression makes avoiding scrutiny impossible, but perhaps the collective self is more insured against self-destruction. Only perhaps.