Every Artist Remembered is a project I began in 2008, which feels like eons ago. I have returned to the project here for Power to the People. Although it is very much a procedural work, I am always confronted by the variables that give each appointment, conversation and resulting drawing or constellation its very specific qualities. Each appointment is open to the public, although their presence is quite incidental for each collaborating artist and myself. The intimacy and connection established between us is at times strong, and at other times tenuous. The audience can, if they choose, bear witness to how this relationship, and the resulting image unfolds.
I give each collaborating artist very similar verbal instructions before each appointment commences. It goes something like this:
The task is, as the name of the work suggests, to remember every artist. This is of course impossible but in this 2 hours we will attempt to do so. The definition of ‘an artist’ is yours. I put no limitations on this and will not censor any name you say. We will alternately recall artists name for exactly two hours. You will name the first and last artist. I will note the artists on this piece of paper as we go, although where I place each name is intuitive and bears no relation to the linear formation of our conversation. I ask that each name be said in relation to the name before. This specific nature of the relation is up to you – it could be linguistic, social, historical, lateral, geographic, sexual, intuitive etc. I ask this so the exercise does not enter the realm of a display of virtuosity or demonstration of encyclopaedic knowledge. It also limits the extent to which this names are a document of taste, although of course taste, virtuosity and knowledge all come in to it. I am not a good speller, and you can correct me if you choose. You may choose to use this a as chance to memorialise certain artists. We can converse about any of the artists either of us don’t know. It’s fine to sit in silence. Ultimately, there will be no evidence of who recalled what name.