01 October 2010

Lauren Kotkin

1. Where and how would you display your work in an ideal situation?
I've always liked small, cozy spaces. So an ideal gallery space for my artwork would feel like a home -- an architecturally interesting and intimate place. And since my work is small, just 8x10 unframed, in an
intimate space each piece would have a chance to settle in, like getting comfortable on a couch, and not get lost on otherwise expansive walls.

2. If expository writing is good at elucidating and proving a point and
descriptive geometry gives us the tools by which to map objects in space
in relation to one another, what kind of an apparatus does art afford us?
What does art do best?
Art eliminates the need for words. It shares emotion and is provocative in an image. As the old adage goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. For me, it's a way to express emotions without having to find the right word to explain what the feeling. It can turn negative emotions into an image of beauty.

3. What can you expect from your audience/fans/viewing public? What would you
like them to know about your work?
I'd like viewers to know more about my paper and current process since the back story adds a complexity to my work. In 2006 I took photographs of the sidewalks in Prague: mosaic tiled sidewalks, not slabs of cement. Later, I became interested in who or what was "falling through the cracks" and remembered the sidewalks; I created my own paper with the sidewalk photographs. From that, I cut small pieces of roughly the same size though different shapes. The pieces get mounted on colored pastel paper and rearranged into an abstract design based on a visual representation of emotional metaphors. So, I create mosaic images from mosaic images--after first separating them. It's a bit meta.

4. Marcel Duchamp said - "Enough with retinal art!" What is your reaction as an artist to this statement?
I say keep retinal art; it is here to stay. Art cannot be completely divorced from the visual. Entry point models validate varying ways to experience art. One can see a circle as a circle, or as pain or joy. If the former experiences the work as a simple circle--it's what is seen--who are we to say that what s/he sees or experiences isn't valid?

5. Do you think that there is still room for art movements in today's
pluralistic climate?
Hasn't art always been pluralistic? There must be forms of expression which did not evolve into movements though human expression is as diverse as humankind. As an arts educator, I highly value creative expression. If we allow as much room as possible for creative expression, movements will be born or not born -- but the bottom line is people are making art of some form.

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