Sunday, October 11, 2009
I doodled on envelopes and wrote short notes this morning to those who sent me $3.50 but didn't request anything. I took 20 minutes for each. Being sick with a cold really set me back. I still have a dozen or more 20 minute labors to do. I'm at 81 envelopes. Of course, I paid my October rent. I'm still here. I was lucky that a few people hired me for longer periods of time.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Monday, September 28, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
I'm exhibiting The Rent Project tonight at Troy Night Out. I'm going to continue the project until the end of the month. I still have 20 minute requests to fulfill. I have a sore throat today and labored breathing. I'm getting a cold. I have to install The Rent Project at 27 3rd street in Troy this morning. It's an empty storefront and I'm not quite sure how I will install yet. Unfortunately, they don't give you anytime to plan. I'm being let in the space for the first time today, the day of the show. If I had been able to get in the space a week ago and periodically until today, it would be better but so be it. Honestly, I'm disappointed in most of the work I see at Troy Night Out. Hell, maybe I'll be disappointed in my own piece.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
I have close to 50 envelopes. I'm almost done completing all tasks, but playing catch up right now. I realize how challenging it is to reach 100 people. I've never been a strong self promoter but I'm learning. One thing I need to work on is being clearer about my ideas. However, I'm not always sure about where a project is going until I get started. I'm finding with The Rent Project, many people want me to direct them. What I want is the opposite. I want them to direct me. Sure, there is a basic framework, but who is to say rules can't be broken? Some have already broken them. I've gotten requests for labors beyond 20 minutes and have received payment through paypal and by check. I see myself as a facilitator and want to basically assemble all this material in a fairly simple way. There is certainly a style to how I document the process and how I carry out these 20 minute actions. I suppose that is my contribution. But more than anything, this is about communication and my own struggle to communicate and connect to others. Art is a go between for me and it has been both successful and unsuccessful.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
I got a request to do a small sign for someone's parents. I had 20 minutes to do so. I sat in bed and doodled this sign. I'm enjoying the varied requests for 20 minute tasks. Some are in person, others I document and send off or post to this blog. This project has really forced me out in the open. WNYT interviewed me the other day and I was on the evening news. I'm still waiting for them to post the video online so I can link it. But my point is I can be very reclusive and this project is challenging that tendency. It is a good thing.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Despite the wonderful support and interest in The Rent Project, I find that I struggle with my energy level. It sometimes feel as though I am lifting a huge boulder above my head. I know I can do this piece and I'm very good at keeping my commitments, in this case performing all the 20-minute requests that I have received so far. But it is honest to say I am easily overwhelmed in my head and body. It's often like a hump I have to get over. As an artist, being out of graduate school for just over 5 years now, it can sometimes be difficult to attain that same creative momentum I had when I was immersed in the built-in community of college. In that time, it was enough to just show up, engage in dialogue with those around you and access all kinds of great minds. Outside that bubble, one must work around "day job" schedules, family and other life responsibilities. I just wonder how we, as an art community can integrate those things into some sort of communal living. I wonder how many artists are interested in such an idea. Why are most of our living situations so isolated from one another? Can there be a center? The capital region has plenty of artists but they are all over the place. There are small enclaves, such as the CAC, The Foundry, Grand St. Community Arts and other groupings of artist studios but I have yet to see a powerful force. How can we merge these energies more? I'm just thinking aloud. I would like to have this conversation with others.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Ingrid asked me to write down my fears for 20 minutes then burn them. I sent her the ashes. I really like the way the ashes look in the envelope. This wasn't a hard project to do as I have many fears. I struggle with anxiety to do with just about everything. I enjoyed burning the paper. I'm a closet pyro. When I was 13 I accidentally set a 7 acre brush fire in northern California but that was a long time ago. Heh heh.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
A friend from Graduate School, Laura, sent me a very beautifully organized package with $3.50, a small box folded, newspaper for packing (The Onion), and postage. She requested this sculpture that she once saw on my staircase almost a year ago. At the time I was leaving little wooden pieces about and this one could be seen between the railing supports on one of the steps up to my apartment. But I moved away from this apartment for a few months before returning and left a lot of things behind. So when I got Laura's letter, I wasn't sure if it was still around. It wasn't on the stairs. It turns out my landlady had it in her shop which is below my apartment and close to where it was on the stairs. She ended up with a few of my little pieces that were floating around. It was a little awkward getting it from her. She may have grown attached. It was hard to tell. But she has other things of mine and will probably end up with more so I didn't feel to bad asking for this. But it was a little awkward. Whatever. I made a bunch of these from bandsaw cutoffs and glue. Anyway, I put it in the box and mailed it off today.
From 11:03 - 11:23 a.m. this morning, I made paper loops for Patrick of We Are Architects. He dropped off the supplies (paper strips and glue), hanging the bag on my front door. I'm not sure what he is using them for but now very curious as they are very beautiful in multiples. I also did a 20 minute drawing for Ginnie using the inside of the envelope so I could close it up and send it off. I went to the post office and mailed off 20-minute projects completed.
I was contacted by Desirae who saw my ad on Craigslist. In addition to the $3.50 she offered me a Reiki session. In return she wanted some help creating a business card. The reiki session took close to an hour and was wonderful. I figure I owe her 20 minutes + 60 minutes in labor. This changed the structure of my project a bit but was welcome. This is her at her office in Albany and the psychedelic table I laid on.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
My friend Staci from Oakland, CA sent me $5.00 and instructions to chant "I will manifest money thru my art and creativity." $5.00 was worth 28 minutes approx. so I chanted for that long. It was difficult to stay focused and sometimes I mixed the words art/money. I thought it was a very good exercise. Staci also wants me to report if any changes happen because of the chanting. I certainly will.
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Did some weeding today for 20 minutes in Albany and had a very nice conversation with Dawn who gave me my $3.50 in a nice decorative envelope. I received 4 envelopes yesterday and 4 today. I've been getting something everyday since I started this project. It's very exciting and keeping me busy with 20 minute jobs.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I worked on a few 20 minute projects today. First I mailed Corinna her 20 minute drawing, then I did two more for Ming Fay who sent me $7.00. Corinna is actually my very first girlfriend, twenty years ago. We've stayed in touch here and there over the years. Ming Fay is an artist and Facebook friend. I did Corinna's drawing on paper and then forgot to photograph it before sending it out today. I photographed a similar one shown here. For Ming Fay, I drew on two scraps of cardboard that were sitting around my apartment. I also worked on a 20 minute critique of Chuck Miller's weblog. He has a blog on the Times Union website.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
I received two more today in the mail. One said "pay it forward" so I am going to think about what I might want to do for someone else, for 20 minutes. The other wants a 20 minute critique of his weblog and flickr photos. I will work on that tonight. Only 4 weeks to go since I'm trying to pay my October rent. I'm not sure If I will make it to 100 unless I get 20 per week. I have 21 now. Although I believe two of those were in the amount of $7.50 requesting 40 minutes of my time. Anyway, it's interesting structuring my life around this project for a given amount of time.