What I feel, when I am at an art gallery, is a feeling of inspiration coupled with a opposing force of jealousy. I marvel at the creativity and the ingenuity of some of the pieces, such that it sparks in me the desire to create as well. But then it also makes me feel totally inadequate and that anything I do will be a pale shadow of these masters. I try anyway, optimism and pessimism co-mingling into one thick soup.
This past weekend, on a trip to Seattle, I visited the Seattle Art Museum, I had a chance to see the original of Mark Rothko's #10. It seemed even more luminous than any reproduction of it I've seen. It seemed simple, yet complex and completely assured. It would be the type of art that some clod would say, "That's art? My two year-old could paint that!" and if I were to be honest, I would also add, "I could do that."
But of course I can't.
In one of the rooms was an installation by Eli Hansen and Oscar Tuazon, called Kodiak. In the stark white room, there is a log which is installed across the room, like a low beam. You had to duck a little to get underneath it. There is a partial staircase and a couple of other small pieces. It is an "architectural fragment" which references and evokes a log cabin or similar structure. The card on the wall said some bullshit about how just these few pieces in the room transports one into the woods and be in an urban setting at the same time.
Then, I had an idea for my own installation. It would be a smaller room, maybe like the size of someone's sewing room, painted white and brightly lit. All the walls will be blank except for a small white card in the far end of the room, which would have the title of the piece. The smell of fart would be piped in intermittently. The title of the piece would be "Silent But Deadly."
I got the idea when I inadvertently farted at Kodiak installation. I had Indian for lunch, sue me. Good thing I was the only guest in there. But as I quickly tried to escape the room, I thought that what could be more transporting to the reality of something such as the smell of fart? Imagine the people visiting my installation, walking in, smelling fart, thinking about the nerve of the person who farted, then walking to the card and reading the title.
It's totally immediate, visceral and profound.
I could even do variations of the piece, like maybe "Smelly Cab" with a fare meter on the wall and the smell of sweat, patchouli and ass piped in...