I don’t love New Year resolutions because forced contemplation has never served me well and if I want to change something so badly about myself—well, why not do it tomorrow? Still, the transition of the Gregorian calendar is a convenient time point to take stock of what is going well, what isn’t, and to change tack accordingly.
So here are a few goals of mine for the upcoming year:
Read Some Art Books and Slow Down
This is my main goal for this year. Much of my work for TFG has been centered around media I was simultaneously consuming, sites I was seeing, or even furniture I was building. On the one hand, this served my purpose of finding the ways that art insidiously entered my life and sharing that with you, dear reader. But I’m also noticing that this isn’t actually all that helpful in terms of thinking creatively and challenging myself to consider other perspectives.
In classes, the core component of art history research was to consider many perspectives on a given topic, turning ideas over in your head and spending time ruminating over them,. You would have the opportunity to discuss with other students or your professors for weeks or maybe an entire semester. The actual writing becomes a minuscule part of the process and reading, editing, and revising becomes the main bread and butter.
Needless to say, this is not the approach I have taken with my writing these days
In the current socio-creative climate, it is so easy to feel pressure to churn out a lot of content quickly and to respond to things in a timely manner just to stay relevant. Creating content that is flashy does not necessarily guarantee that content is good; it usually lacks nuance and evidence.
Instead of feeling compelled to respond personally and immediately, I’m challenging myself to be slower, more thoughtful, and more structured in my approach to my subjects. I am challenging myself to take the time and space to think about my words more carefully and to try and find many different perspectives before putting forth my own. If you have any suggestions for good books on art and design, drop them in the comments below!
Back to Basics
I realized earlier that my biography on the TFG team page lists architecture as my specific field of interest. In school, this would manifest in me choosing to write about an important building 90% of the time for assignments. When given any opportunity to write about buildings, I would (simply because I couldn’t help myself).
Being out in the real world has been a bit different; most of my pieces have just been my reactions to things around me, which hasn’t asked me to push my boundaries very far. embarrassingly, I have written very few articles about architecture. I should fix that this year.
“All Art Was Once Contemporary” (and still is if you’re thinking hard enough)
One of the things I really love about architecture is that it is at times philosophical and tries to solve problems.Over the years I have gravitated towards art and architecture of the 20th century, because I believe it to be more psychological and easier to consider in the context of modern day issues. In the case of 20th and 21st century artists, we usually have extensive writing about the reasonings behind such creative endeavours! How convenient!
While the antiquities used to really fascinate me BECAUSE they were so far removed from my quaint little New England suburban life, I would argue that every time we think about an image or object, we do so through the lens of our current time and place whether we mean to or not.
Everything can be relevant to today’s social and political issues—or at least that what I am about to set off to prove.
What are your art goals for the coming year? Let us know in the comments below!
Cover image via Unsplash by rawpixel