June 15, 2012

Articulation

Lately, I've been thinking a lot about articulation. Not about joints and movement, nor the ability to physically sound parts of speech, but how to describe thoughts with language. Shouldn't be so hard, right? One would think our thoughts are formed in words so articulating our thoughts is simply sharing the words in our heads. Not so. At least not for me.

I can work for over a year on a photography project and be at a complete loss when it comes time to write an artist's statement about the work. I imagine some artists begin with the statement and make work to fulfill it. Maybe. I personally don't know anyone who does that. The statement is always the last thing we do and only do it because it is a required element of most grant and exhibition applications. Visual art is simply that. Visual. Transforming the visual impulse into language is difficult.

From what I understand (from a fantastic book The Shaking Woman or a History of My Nerves by Siri Husvedt - who is a novelist, essayist, and art critic), visual understanding and language itself generate from different lobes of the brain. Injury or defect can sever the connection; leaving one unable to connect words to the objects they name, unable to recognize objects at all, or able to recognize the object and it's use but unable to name it. I would look this up to verify my memory (another fickle brain function) and to give a more accurate description, but I don't own the book and none of my local libraries has a copy.

But what got me thinking about articulation is the difficulty I am having trying to put into words, concrete thoughts, my business plan. My elevator speech. My mission, vision, and values. More precisely, how to boil it all down into a single, catchy phrase to describe Odd Bird Studio. I'm stuck. May as well go mow the lawn. Literally - it's looking kinda trashy - and figuratively.

2 comments:

  1. Love the photo! So pretty.

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    1. It's a picture taken in my front yard of the northern sky at sunset sometime in early spring.

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