Art Criticism

On The Weird Fact that Something I Said Got Compared to Duchamp


Here, slightly edited:  a conversation I had with my colleague and friend–though, I’ve never met the man–Odin:

On the Guardian piece about the collapsing incomes of writers, and Odin’s sincere and challenging critique of people who think they’re writers just because they have a blog. (Opinions are like assholes, right? And everyone of those assholes is destroying the profession of writing; or, say, if there is no such profession then opinionators are swamping over the market that used to pay writers for their labor. (Or is it their work?)):

Odin (in white):  “includes me too, right? Are we contributors? What qualifies and what doesn’t? How does creativity get paid in the age of digital so we can all make a living? tough questions – and of course I wasn’t referring to you about the blog thing – we’re both pro’s who have published, but others…not so much. “
Me (forever in blue, like my suede shoes):
pros?!!! Hah? Moi? Tu joke!
i make the distinction that i’m not a writer. a critic, maybe, at most an “art writer”. but that’s it
Odin: “I make no such distinction, but I’m careful not to call myself something that I don’t work at and take seriously.”
yeah, something like that
so, then, i really shouldn’t call meself an artist either. damn
Odin: “You’re being disingenuous to say you don’t take art seriously in perhaps a Duchamp-like manner, no?”
maybe. but i wouldn’t even say that
…i take it seriously in so far as there is something to say. i may not say it that well, but, at least, i try to say it.
Odin: “I think this discussion is worthy of a blog post.”
and i hope that in 30 odd years i’ll be able to say it well.
…i’m open to the possibility that i might have done or am now doing something interesting
Odin: “here, here…now I must return to the job that keeps me in [X object(s)] because my creative side don’t get paid shit
..i hope, though, that one day i’ll do something interesting and that, moreover, i’ll know that as a “lived” fact

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