Yesterday I went to visit Tracey Emin’s Love is what you want at the Hayward Gallery.
I really enjoyed the show. It was long and exhausting but totally worth it.I didn’t know much about Tracey Emin. only that she was famous, British and controversial, friends with Sarah Lucas and had an interesting face. I knew she had various neon pieces and I had seen pictures of some of her blankets and the famous “My bed”. But her work never really interested me much, I had seen some pictures in books and found it a bit childish I don’t know why. However, yesterday she touched me like few artist have touched me. Her massive homey blankets were impressive live, hanging on the tall walls and screaming all sort of messages of despair, love and rage. The black wall full of neon hand written notes was beautiful and energetic.
I really loved the room with family and friends. The little super8 piece of her dad in the beach made my skin tremble, maybe because I have my own dad story, but I just found it exquisitely simple and touching.
The friends part? I grew up in a family that I discovered it was made of friends. My mother used to be continuously surrounded by her friends, that were also my friends, and treated me just like one of them, or at least this is how I felt. So I always like it when people include their friends into their artistic life. I love to include and work with friends in my films too.
Sometimes I feel maybe I’d be happier creating in the arts, I miss the freedom. But then I remember the feeling of getting out the cinema after watching a good movie and I know this is what I want to do: creating this feeling in someone else.
So I recommend go and see her work live wherever you can as there is no comparison with seeing it in a book. Her work is just emotion and you need to be close to it.
“Un artista no es un ciudadano que pertenezca a la sociedad. Un artista está destinado a explorar cada aspecto de la experiencia humana, los rincones más oscuros, aunque no necesariamente; ahora bien, si es eso lo que te atrae, hacia ahí debes encaminarte. No puedes preocuparte por lo que la sociedad considera buena o mala conducta, buena o mala, exploración. Por eso, en cuanto uno se convierte en artista, deja de ser ciudadano. No tiene la misma responsabilidad social.”
“An artist is not a citizen that belongs to society. The artist’s destiny is to explore every aspect of the human experience, the darkest corners, although not necessarily. However, if this is what attracts you, this is where you must head to. You cannot worry about society’s consideration of good and bad conduct, good or bad exploration. This is why, when one becomes an artist, is no longer a citizen. It doesn’t have the same social responsibility.”
Long life to the New Flesh!!
The further that I went into the digital world the more intrigued I became with the possibilities of this new and unexplored technology. What started out as a marriage of convenience turned into a love affair. My dissatisfaction with the mainstream cinema scene stems from a deep frustration with the stranglehold that technology has in the 35mm, studio-based film business. Visit any set and you can observe the bullshit at first hand.Observe the reverence with which the camera is treated. The iconic status of the crane and the Steadycam; the vast armada of trucks and motor homes; the platoons of young men and women carrying clip boards and wearing status clothing with walkie talkies and hi-tech communication devices; the sense of self importance and Godliness that seems to permeate everyone involved with the process of pretence and fabrication; the deadly trios of execs and agents feeding their faces at the food table whilst talking on their mobiles to other execs on other films at other food tables. One year later the results of this “holy” labor can be seen in a multiplex anywhere in the world. Another Hollywood film about nothing in particular.
Unpublished interview with Mike Figgis at the Dramatic Institute, Sweden.
And taken from the book I am reading: Directing, film techniques and aesthetics by Michael Rabinger. A reading that I strongly recommend to anyone who wants to make films.