Sunday, December 06, 2009

Dreamworks and Kreisler

The other day I received a postcard from the States with writing on it that seemed vaguely familiar, a proper USA postage stamp and a couple of pictures of Hollywood on the front. The message read:

Hi Mike
We need somebody to write a script, compose the soundtrack and paint a picture. Give me a call at Dreamworks! Best, Steven.

All very weird: I don't know anyone called Steven who's travelling at the moment, and the whole thing seems a bit like a hoax. It also seems like a lot of trouble to go to just to play a trick. Well, maybe the answer will come in due course.

On another front, the Dunedin Public Art Gallery is currently hosting an exhibition of works by Tom Kreisler, an artist I'd never heard of. At first I thought the stuff was all a bit pseud - too much wordplay and not enough art, but the curators of the exhibition have wisely included a lot of memorabilia relating to the works on the walls, and as a result you begin to see that this is an interesting artist, more accessible than it first appears, and with an interesting sense of humour. (This in itself is enough to make me feel more enthusiastic about him.)

On the programme guide there's a paragraph quoted from an interview with Kreisler:

It's just a bit of rubbish I wrote one day, and it says: "Having lived with myself as a Foreigner, an outsider to most cultures, I know what I like in my work, and I try to shape it accordingly. Hate pretentiousness, cleverness, boringness, being respectable, that is deserving of respect. Artists who set themselves up as monuments of excellence, social toadiness. I like that art that constantly questions itself, that appears to be aloof, but is passionate, that looks at ordinariness and ordinary things without wishing to colonise them. I don't like art that is so aggressive that it excludes and destroys all that it touches, but I do like an art that understands the totality of its own existence, that is at the same time conscious of its own fallibility. I am more concerned with thoughts and attitudes than appearances.

Well that gives a bit of insight into the man. There are a lot of images of his work on the Net (as well as at the link above) - just Google Tom Kreisler nz for them. (It looks as if someone's made plenty of directory submissions on Kreisler's behalf, or else he's just a lot more popular than I know.

It just goes to show: you think you have a bit of a handle on the 'names' in the art field, or the music field, or whatever, and time and again, a new name pops up that's never been on the radar before.
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