Throughout history, art has been the most interesting and meaningful record of humanity’s existence. Yet art not only reflects the world that produces it, but also taps into its time to invent the future. So Daniel Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Year(1722), which offered fact in the form of a novel, becomes the precursor of serious modern journalism. Paradoxically, his fictional Robinson Crusoe (1719), the best-known book in English for a quarter of a millennium, was often regarded as fact. Much closer to our own time, we only need to consider the effect of Japanese manga cartoons on popular culture and how they have shaped the aesthetic consciousness and appearance of youth born into our post manga world. However you look at it, humanity’s consciousness is infiltrated.
What interests me is how artists interact with their time in history to create something new. In this series, I want to intercept the artist at the point of that interaction and discuss the work that has resulted from it.
When I spoke to film maker Jack Feldstein about the possibility of doing an interview with him, he said, “Oh, is it going to be a series?” His supportive ebullience caught me off-guard and I stammered my way out of it. But the artist in Jack is a bit psychic because, in fact, to interview Jack, who is moving to New York in March, I had to put off the interview I had pencilled in for February, with artist and sculptor, Darien Pullen about the sandstone studio he has built for himself. The building in question is a work of high art: pristinely aesthetic, puritanically functional and so environmentally friendly that it could be a blueprint for sustainable living beyond the pet-cage wheel of earn-spend-consume-earn-spend-consume.
The interviews I want to produce are made possible by digital media and the luxury of cyber space, a sprawling universe of technological possibility that allows comprehensive recording and automatic full illustration of the subject matter under discussion. So, it’s not really only words, but words are all I have to address something more that can now also be conveyed.
Jack Feldstein Interviewed will be on line March 1