Here I am after 11 days of this project and I am running up against a problem. It’s not the problem of lack of discipline: with a history of success in two year-long serial art projects in the bag I’m unlikely to falter or forget. It’s not the problem of lack of ideas: quite the reverse I’m overflowing with ideas already. It’s the problem of the rules! I have said I will “create a fresh artwork from scratch each day for a year” and that I see it as “distributed art”, one piece of work owned by many individuals over time and space. That makes it a conceptual project which the audience is taking on trust: people are willing to accept that my act of posting an image of the day’s piece on Instagram and Twitter before the end of the day equates to evidence that I produced it that day. People I have talked to about this have said I should not take things so seriously and to stop making difficulties for myself. Most people seem to just be enjoying it in a light-hearted way, but I need to make it clear to myself and anyone interested that, for the project to be a success, there have to be rules that I abide by and success can only be achieved by measurement against those rules! So, the problem I have is what do I mean by “from scratch”?
The mere fact that I have started the project is enough for my brain to generate all sorts of ideas for it. I am also doing other work and have in the past done work in the area of “Black Squares” so I cannot avoid whatever I do in #BlackSquares365 being influenced by all that. I am not aiming to create a new, unique idea each day only a new, unique artwork each day. I am more interested in developing themes and refining ideas rather than being completely different each day. So I may end up doing runs and series of pieces, but they will be made freshly within the 24 hours of each day. So for clarity here are some of my thoughts about the rules:
- My aim is to have no plan in advance what any day’s piece might be be, but that doesn’t stop me being able to look at my sketchbooks or notes and using an idea from there or even something I steal from others.
- If I create more than one piece to the format in a day I cannot use the spares for some day in the future (though I could use the unused piece as collage material for future pieces)
- I am allowed to cut paper to size in advance and make collage material in advance.
- My aim is to create work of good quality and integrity. I will not allow a “that’ll do” attitude. I will continue to make work until I am satisfied that the result is of a quality I would be happy to spend money on framing and put on my own walls.
- If I make prints they will be the product of a single day – but I may use surplus prints as as collage material or overprint on later dates.
- If the piece is a photograph it will be taken on that day but I can use it in future days as collage material or as elements within a digital work.
That probably covers it for now, but I would welcome any thoughts or challenges to this.
I have included a gallery of the pieces up to yesterday