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Title A Conceptual Draft as a Creative Method: The Unfinished Work of Contemporary Art
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About author Galkin, Dmitry Vladimirovich — full doctor, professor. National Research Tomsk State University, Lenina pr., 36, 634050 Tomsk, Russian Federation.
In the section International Art of the 20th and 21st Centuries: Modernity and Contemporaneity DOI10.18688/aa188-5-53
Year 2018 Volume 8 Pages 548556
Type of article RAR Index UDK 7.01 Index BBK 85.103(0)6

The presented research paper focuses on the problematic status of the artwork in the field of contemporary art. We address this issue from the perspective of a conceptual draft as a creative method, and the deconstruction of an artwork. Theoretical foundations and arguments applied in this paper employ the post-structuralist notion of intertextuality of an artwork (R. Barthes, J. Derrida, U. Eco), the theory of ‘multiple authorship’ by Boris Groys, and the concept of ‘aesthetically potent environment’ by Gordon Pask. This theoretical framework allows us to demonstrate that intertextuality makes any identification and attribution of the ‘finished’ artwork problematic. Multiple authorships condemn the projects of contemporary art to stay unfinished and often to be re-worked in the transitional zone between different exhibitions with different spaces and contexts.

Different theoretical angles emphasize one general point — the inevitable game with time any artwork has to play. We develop our arguments further with the examples of projects by several contemporary artists: Urs Fisher, Verena Friedrich, Ken Rinaldo, and the Where Dogs Run art group. In this part of the research, we consider what we call “a conceptual draft” as a foundation of the creative method that makes an artwork inevitably unfinished from the conceptual perspective. Urs Fisher makes a conceptual draft operating as a creative element of selfdestruction in his artworks (series of burning candle portrait sculptures and ongoing YES project). Ken Rinaldo, Verena Freidrich and members of the Where Dogs Run art group (these artists work with so-called technological art) employ conceptual draft from the perspective of real time as a major element of artists’ works (Augmented Fish Reality by Ken Rinaldo, Vanitas Machine by Verena Freidrich, and 1,4…19 by Where Dogs Run; Rinaldo and Where Dogs Run use living organisms in their installations). Artworks exist only as techno-art hybrids operating in real time that produces “aesthetically potent environments” (G. Pask) and emergent behaviors in the context of exhibition. Bringing together theoretical and artistic perspectives we conclude that “the conceptual draft” is the useful theoretical idea that allows us to develop more sufficient language for discussing the question of an artwork status in contemporary art as a never-finished project with uncertain intertextual borders, dynamic authorship, and the time-based aesthetics of “aesthetically potent environment”.

Reference Galkin, Dmitry V. A Conceptual Draft as a Creative Method: The Unfinished Work of Contemporary Art. Actual Problems of Theory and History of Art: Collection of articles. Vol. 8. Ed. S. V. Mal’tseva, E. Iu. Staniukovich-Denisova, A. V. Zakharova. — St. Petersburg: St. Petersburg Univ. Press, 2018, pp. 548–556. ISSN 2312-2129.
Publication Article language russian
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