Artwork #1: Score

Justin Brady Score: Dream Paper

For my score, I was loosely inspired by Yoko Ono’s Painting by Hammer and Nail, wherein the executor of the score repeats an action every day in the morning. It reminded me of a routine I sometimes do in the morning of writing down my dreams in a dream journal. I also realized how I never really do anything with my dreams after I have them and write them down, and wanted to change that. So I wrote my Dream Paper Score, as follows:

Dream Paper

Go to sleep.

Dream about something

Type your dream in a dream journal.

Pick a font size/style that will fill the page completely.

Print out the dream on cardstock.

Repeat the process every day, printing on the same piece of paper.

Use a different color every time.

You’re done when there is no white space remaining.

Artist Statement: The main purpose of this assignment was to attempt to give a sort of form to the messy mixing of memories and dreams over time. What starts as a relatively clear memory is obscured by other, newer, equally clear memories (at the time), until they all obfuscate and mesh together into a mostly incomprehensible mess. An interesting occurrence of this particular work was that there were still lines from individual dreams that could be clearly made out in the finished piece, most notably “and a flip phone.” at the bottom.  It kind of showed me how even though i originally thought that everything would be lost, there are still particular facets of each individual part that compromise the whole which are unique and visible in the final product, just like memories in an aged brain.

Here is the final piece, which I have pompously titled “and a flip phone.”

Ball Painting Score

Take multiple Tennis balls and different color paint cans, put the canvas in the middle of the room. Give the artists multiple gloves to be able to pick up and roll the ball across the canvas of different colors.  If everyone is alright they may bounce the ball to each other assuming they dont mind getting paint on themselves. The idea originally came around when my friend and personal trainer Kevin Brewerton showed me a video of him doing art with his boxing gloves and punching the canvas with paint on his gloves.  I wanted to take a step further and try throwing a baseball or hitting a baseball against the paint however many things can go wrong so quickly with that. Baseballs can deflect and hit someone, not enough space to protect the whole area from getting splashed. I then thought about doing something similar with throwing a tennis ball between two people against the wall but there’s still the potential of breaking the canvas and also dealing with covering up as much ground so we won’t get paint everywhere.  

What is needed for the happening:

  • Tennis Balls (six for this Happening)
  • Tempura Paint (Blue, Orange, Red, Green)
  • Paper plates to hold the paints
  • Disposable Gloves to help handle the tennis balls
  • A giant Tarp to paint on and also prevent the ground or room to be painted on
  • MISSING: (19in x 24in Paper as the canvas)
    • Tarp became the new Canvas

The results of the Happening: Lack of preparation for the Happening resulted in many changes to the final presentation. Didn’t have a place to prepare for the project nor could I get the tarp that I wanted to stay on the wall. The solution to this was to lay the tarp on the ground and instead bounce the tennis balls covered in paint.  The results are shown here:

The tennis balls ended up soaking up the paint and not splashing as much as I wished there would be. I had fun with the idea and it would be a lot of fun to potentially take this idea and reserve a room, get a ball that will splash more, and have the liberty of chucking the balls at full force without worrying about damages.  I find this can be a fun way to relieve stress by doing physical while also making art through your own physical actions.

SCORE Final iteration: “To Eat an Apple”

To Eat an Apple

Pick an apple from a tree. Choose it carefully to ensure the best quality of taste.

Eat the apple until only the core remains.

Find an empty patch of soil and plant the core of the apple; ensure that there are seeds in the core, not just an empty shell.

Water the soil every day; fertilize it frequently.

Continue nourishing the soil until a sapling sprouts from the ground and grows a couple inches tall.

Find the best books, textbooks, and paintings you can.

Throw them at the sapling.

Leave the sapling in the pile.

Continue to water the earth, even if you can’t see the plant.

(a) Wait until a tree grows upon the books.

Once it reaches a couple of feet tall, take a picture of the tree and frame it.

(b) If the tree does not grow, repeat again, but with an orange.

2019 Fall

Artist’s statement:

“To Eat an Apple” was inspired by a children’s science experiment known as the “Potato Maze” and the scores in Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit. The “Potato Maze” is a science experiment I did in 7th grade, in which a potato is placed at the bottom of a maze-like shoe box with a hole at the top. The goal was for the potato to grow a stem around the obstacles to ultimately poke through the hole and reach sunlight. In addition, I loved the absurd and destructive nature of Yoko Ono’s works, which I wanted to embody in a way that involved college. This semester, as a freshman, I’ve had to adapt to the new college lifestyle. These ideas culminated in “To Eat an Apple”, a score in which you symbolically take the role of a parent, trying to raise an educated child. The apple is heavily tied with the concept of knowledge as the fruit from the tree of knowledge in the “Fall of Man” is often depicted as an apple. In addition, an apple falling on Isaac Newton’s head is the common explanation for the beginning of his research on gravity. The work all together is intended to recreate the feeling of parenthood and entering a child into the college process. In the start, eating the apple is analogous to having sex, as the activity itself satisfies a base desire and (after planting the core) results in new life. Afterwards, the played needs to care for the soil by fertilizing and watering it. Once it sprouts from the ground and becomes large enough, the player throws textbooks and other works at the plant, in order to simulate the schooling process, which can be overwhelming yet ultimately beneficial. As the player continues to water and fertilize the soil laden with books, it becomes difficult to observe the plant itself, so the player must provide distant support. Ultimately the sapling must navigate through the pile of books and grow on its own with the resources given (now transformed into a sort of fertilizer). In the end, if it succeeds, you celebrate with a picture (kind of like at a graduation), but if it doesn’t, you move on and attempt again with a different fruit, an orange, symbolizing that the traditional education route may fail one child, but it may succeed for another (apples to oranges).  As discussed in class, the gameplay of this score are intended to convey a meaning, rather than the story itself, as the player unwittingly takes up the role of a parent.

Documentation:

(For some reason WordPress won’t let me upload photos, so I uploaded them to the google album linked below, and you can view them from there)

https://photos.app.goo.gl/84w2poA1bguPA7nM8

Photo 1: The apple I’m using to do the score, picked fresh from the Dining Hall.

Photo 2: Me, biting into the apple, it was really juicy. Not pictured: Me eating the rest of the apple.

Photo 3: Me, holding up the completely finished apple core to show that the deed had been done, I had consumed the apple, leaving behind only the core.

Photo 4: A picture of the seeds contained inside the core of the decimated apple.

Photo 5: The core in a hole in the soil, being prepared to be buried. (I did this somewhere in Fenway in some soft soil).

Photo 6: The core completely buried now, with soil and wood chips pushed over it.

Photo 7: Me, watering the spot in the soil with the apple core.

That was as far as I could go as the plant didn’t grow yet.

Pranav Gopan Score #1 – Shared Fire / Shared Passion

Score:

Two people, one piece of canvas paper, one lighter

One person holds the canvas paper at a 45-degree angle.

The other person takes the lighter and makes a mark on the paper using the flame.

Switch roles after each mark is formed.

The game is over if the paper catches on fire.

The game is won if an image can be made.

 

Intimacy is like a dance. One person makes a move and the other mirrors with their own style. Repetition of this creates a flow between two people. The flow can be smooth and beautiful. A mutual understanding can build into something memorable and worthwhile. At the same time, a single mistake can break the rhythm. Once a delicate image can turn into something unrecognizable. And soon the flow between two people is gone altogether.

The idea behind this project is to reflect the nature of relationships. Two people have to work together in order to create a beautiful picture. I chose fire as the main element because of its relentless and unpredictable nature. To leave an elegant mark, one must hold the flame just at the right distance from the paper and just for the right amount of time. All while, the other person must steadily hold the paper. Relationships require care, attention, and trust. When done right, beautiful memories are formed. But a single mistake can make those memories disappear. Just like in this score, a single mistake can lead to the whole paper catching on fire and destruction of past marks.

I knew I wanted to work with fire after seeing Wolfgang Paalen’s work, Fumage, in class. I spent the past summer working on various fire paintings myself, so it was exciting to start another project. Since I couldn’t find a friend who was brave enough to work with fire, I’ve attached a video of me playing both roles, along with a few of my own pieces.

IMG_2419.TRIM

Score – Amaël de Betak

Polaroid Painting

 

Take a picture using a polaroid camera.

Carefully remove the plastic film covering the picture using a blade of some kind.

Take a paintbrush and use the ink to paint the picture on the back of the polaroid frame.

 

 

The three main themes behind this score are rebirth, repurposing and time.

 

The theme of rebirth comes from the action of taking the picture and ‘killing’ it by cutting through it and removing its life, which can be thought of as the blood representing the blood of the picture. Then, the image is given a new life through the action of remaking it through a different technique and somewhat preserving the medium.

 

The theme of repurposing comes from this idea of taking something we are given and making something else out of it. One of the ways in which I view this score is somehow fulfilling a desire. When you take a picture, you are not exactly sure as to how it is going to come out, especially on a polaroid camera where there is no display and you simply have to rely on the image which one can see in the viewfinder. Therefore, when the picture comes out there is a chance that we are not satisfied with the outcome. This score allows you to take that polaroid and make something you want out of it by repainting the image with the memory of how you wanted it to be and not necessarily how it came out.

 

The final theme is time, which is obtained through the process of using a new-ish medium, as polaroid cameras have now been long surpassed by digital cameras, in order to give birth to an ancient medium, in this case, painting which has been present since at least 39,000 BCE with the first painting of a disc found in El Castillo.

 

The idea behind this score came from an art project which I had worked on where I was exploring the theme of emptiness and unfulfillment and decided to explore the medium of the polaroid. I had created a tryptic with one overexposed polaroid which was completely white, one polaroid which was taken in the total darkness of our school’s darkroom and one which was simply the frame of the polaroid painted using the ink from a picture.

Wanderlust Score

Wanderlust
On the third Friday of the month,
Take a bus to a place you have never heard of.

Disembark;
Walk until you cannot.

Await further instructions.

 

I had two intentions when I created this score: first, I wanted to share a sense of adventure (perhaps a sensation of feeling lost). This is an important element missing from day to day life–some of my fondest memories growing up are times spent in the Adirondack mountains upstate in New York. Wandering, exploring, getting carelessly lost, and occasionally hitchhiking back to my uncles’ farm are among the realest experiences I’ve had; perhaps these are the times in my life I’ve lived most attuned to Fluxus values.

My goal was to combine that feeling with my second intention: an intervention of instructions using humor (“that deadliest of weapons against all that is pompous, staid, and holy” Zhuangzi). Scores, essentially lists of instructions, always seemed to me a weird vehicle for Fluxus to employ. It’s strange that they would employ such an explicit means–although maybe that’s part of it? Details such as “the third Friday of the month” and the pseudo-poetic structure of the stanzas are meant to imply some ornate level of significance, when there is in fact none. It is part of a trap laid for the reader: a lure with the promise of adventure only to discover a dead end, a punishment for following instructions blindly without question.

Or at least that was my original, somewhat callous intention for the score. Later when shared in class numerous other interpretations opened my eyes to alternate possibilities. My favorite of these (in keeping with the theme of wanderlust) involved changing the line “walk until your legs give out” to “walk until you cannot”: a far more open-ended prompt. Subsequently, the final line “Await further instructions” becomes similarly open to interpretation–the instructions can come from anywhere, you’ll know them when they come.

It’s always cool when other perspectives can show me new ways to riff off of something I created. I’m starting to truly value the potency of collaboration.

Washing Cycle Score

Washing Cycle

1) Pick up a dirty laundry
2) Wash it until it’s clean
3) Throw it at any surface that would make it dirty and do one of the following
a)Pick up the laundry and repeat step 1-3
b)Leave the laundry

Development and Inspiration

The first iteration of my score is a simple three step instruction. The first step is to “pick up a dirty clothes”. The second step is to simply “wash it clean”. And the third and final step is “throw it in a dirty puddle”. My inspiration for this score came from the scores in Grapefruit. In Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit there is a lot of seemingly pointless and absurd scores and instructions. Scores that stand out to me are Water piece which just simply stated “water”. Another one is where it tells you to hide until everyone forgets about you and die. I wanted to make a score that seem pointless like washing a dirty clothes just to throw it away and make it dirty. During the class discussion people brought up a lot of good points and observation about my score. Such as the score could represent a cycle or breaking of it. And that there is no further instructions after the last step, where it’s up to the person. So I took in those ideas and made the final version of my score. I wanted to give a clear option to the person performing this score. One option will create a cycle and another with break it. I also changed some of the wording to give more freedom to the performer. I changed dirty clothes to dirty laundry so that they can use other things such as socks, pants or even backpack. I changed the dirty puddle part to any surface that would dirtied the laundry. The reason for this change is because during the discussion someone brought up the point of what if the performer couldn’t find a dirty puddle. All these changes would let the performer use any laundry and at anywhere.

Idea
My idea behind the score is the idea of redundancy and cycle. Everybody is technically already doing the first three steps in their everyday life. They got dirty laundry and they would wash it. Eventually the clothes gets dirty by touching multiple surfaces and then the cycle repeats again. This is why I made the score vague in terms of time. I did not tell the performer to do the step right after the other. I left out the words such as “then” and “finally” so that each step can be done at any time. Everyone is repeating the 3 step until they chose to leave the laundry. The option at the end is a representation of the option everyone has: an option to stop. But ending a cycle is difficult. For example a bad habit, people can tell you stop but it’s difficult. You’re not gonna stop unless you want it to. Like the dirty laundry why would you throw it away just because a score gave you an option to. Only reason you would want to is you choose it yourself.

Self-Portrait Score

Original: Self-Portrait

Place a mirror in front of you. Using a clean sheet of paper and a new pencil, draw what you see, sharpening as needed. Stop when your pencil disappears. Leave the drawing but remember to take everything else.

 

Final: Self-Portrait

Place a mirror in front of you so that you are looking at yourself without distraction. Using a clean sheet of paper and a new pencil, draw what you want without erasing. Sharpen as needed, stopping only when your pencil disappears. Leave the drawing but remember to take everything else.

 

This score was inspired by a lot of work stemming from East Asian Taoist and Buddhist art. The actual voice for the score was inspired by East Asian poetry. I wanted a piece that was very simple in concept, but difficult in execution. I wanted it to be a challenge for the performer, as well as a lesson of sorts. My main ideas were of introspection, self-concept, and self-healing. When I thought of this score, I intended for it to be repeatable, and meditative, and designed it as a form of meditation. In its first iteration, the main idea was that the performance should get more difficult as you draw as there is less you see to draw, and at this point you would need to search harder for what to draw. In the second iteration, after I attempted the performance myself, I realized that I wanted to make it a bit more intense of an experience, so I added the rule that you can’t erase, so everything you draw is permanent. During class, some comments were that the score was vague, which I intended, but I tightened it up a bit, adding the lines that the space should be free of distractions. Some people realized that by the way I worded it, that the performer didn’t need to draw themselves necessarily, so I took with that and changed it so they draw whatever they want and I also added that they need to see themselves in the mirror. After performing the score, I saw some additional themes of just the experience of life. Thinking about Dada and how they made equivalent both art and life, I thought about how the score was really about the experience of making art rather than the actual drawing itself, in the same way that perhaps life is more about the experience than about the actual content.

 

Final Drawing

 

Rishi

Don’t Panic (please)

Be muted. Say things you don’t mean.
Don’t worry about it though.
Be deafened. Hear things that aren’t always there.
You really shouldn’t be so hysterical.
Be blinded. See nothing you want to, and everything you don’t.
But don’t, like, panic or anything.

After reading many scores by Yoko Ono and others, I noticed a sort of poeticism to the words and phrases used, as well as the concepts themselves. For instance, the quiet romanticism of Yoko Ono’s Tape Piece III resonated quite strongly with me. I ended up approaching the writing of my score more like a freeform poem than a game or a performance like many people, probably because I am more comfortable in the realm of poetry than I am in performance art. I ended up being very focused on the flow of the language and the look of the words on the page, perhaps overly so.  In the process of designing my score, I ended up making several drafts with slight variations and comparing them to each other in terms of visual clarity and meaningfulness.

The message of my score evolved as I wrote it. My first intentions were to portray some kind of anxiety-ridden way of life, which is what the majority of people I showed it to read into it as well. As I rote, though, I was reminded or the old saying “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil,” and how that kind of behavior can often lead to evil taking power in a society. While I did enjoy the double meaning of my original score, I knew that, at least for my own purposes, I would have to choose one to lean into, mostly because of the how unrelated the two subjects were. Another, more tempting, solution would be to shift one or the other in some direction to relate them more closely to each other, either by drawing a parallel or juxtaposing something about them. After a lot of deliberation, I decided that taking the more personal angle would be much more impactful.

The path I chose was somewhat paradoxical: the instructions are at once demanding and condescending. The player is told to do things that remove control of their own lives from their hands, and then in the next breath they have their concerns dismissed as “worrying” and “hysteria.” This is meant to evoke the feeling of struggling with a total loss of control as someone with the responsibility, or at least the ability, to help fails to do so. The condescension toes the line of gaslighting at points, casually brushing off any reasons to panic or even worry, completely juxtaposed with the opposite lines’ instructions to give up all trust in your senses.

Recommended Daily Health Tips

Drink 8.4 ounces of water to start your day. Drink another 58.8 ounces throughout the day. Do not drink any more or any less. If you do, force yourself to regurgitate, measure its volume, and replenish only the correct amount. 

Ingest exactly 2000 calories. Ingest only fatty fish, nuts, vegetables, fruits, and eggs. If you fail to comply, pump your stomach and start over.

Vigorously exercise for 60 minutes. Do not take breaks. Do not stop. If your weak body passes out, get help, catch your breath, and then finish the remaining minutes of exercise. 

Sleep exactly 9 hours. If you are having trouble falling asleep it is acceptable to use a tranquilizer. If you are having trouble waking up, sleep on an off-balance chair and create a complex rig to tip you over at the right time. 

Repeat the following day. 

Artist Statement

My score was inspired by the modern idea of a perfect “healthy” lifestyle. I sought to subvert the idea of not only an exact, unmoving, empirically proven standard for “health” by rigidly sticking to commonly accepted, ideal recommendations to the point that it’s obviously ridiculous. Obviously, nobody measures their water intake in ounces and calorie labels are inherently unspecific and variable– by focusing on complete precision it’s obvious that one would have to go to extreme ends to even fulfill the score. For many people it would even be reactively dangerous to attempt it: people with nut allergies, diabetes, or low blood pressure, for example.

Moreover, I think a lot of these recommendations also fail to acknowledge ethnic and cultural differences. They’re often researched by, on, and commanded forward by white people; framing these as universal matrixes uphold a euro-centric white supremacist worldview. Additionally, a lot of these health recommendations both not cisgendered and differently abled people– the idea of an average “healthy” weight, BMI, height, etc. (especially when divided by sex) marginalizes a lot of people for it would simply be impossible to maintain said standards.

In the language of the writing itself I chose an authoritarian, overbearing tone– I find that the social pressure to maintain these healthy lifestyle is often presented in a way that shames and attacks people that can’t or don’t want to follow it. Following authoritarian tactics, the score barks orders and then disproportionately punishes the failure to follow them. My own experiences with authoritarianism has also taught me that incredibly often totalitarian governments will also maintain ironically inefficient, nationalist or sectionalist policies– I tried to mimic this with the chair rig suggestion.