Dear Ms. Garcia - Anton
Dear Ms. Garcia-Anton,
A few hours ago I asked for your friendship on Facebook. Had you already accepted it, I would have addressed you as Katya. Although I’m well aware your schedule must be frightfully busy, I cannot afford waiting until you find time to consider my request, as I’ve decided I would conceive, produce and submit my artwork for Celeste Prize all on the last day. I am thus addressing you in this rather formal way even though I’m afraid this might lessen the degree of intimacy of this public letter. Unfortunately, time is tyrant.
It occurred to me that time is in fact the central element to this piece, and that’s why I’m submitting it for the Live Media, Installation, Sculpture and Performance Prize, the category most suited for works concerned with the fourth dimension.
Time is inscribed in the act of reading as well as writing a letter, and I am cherishing the thought of stealing a certain amount of it – I’d say roughly five minutes – from all those who come across this letter, including you.
Even more I am interested in the very flimsy ménage-a-trois between labour in art, time, and money, which I am trying to punctuate by engaging with this award only at the very last minute (nothing to do with procrastination you see?). I’m paying, at the speed of light with Paypal, 40 Euros in order to submit a work that cost me zero and only took about an hour and a half to conceive and produce; and there is a chance, not so high I should imagine, that I might win a conspicuous amount of money thanks to this limited effort. This is an extreme, almost offensive, pull on the equation that determines the value of an object or a service, I’m not advocating the originality of this gesture, but I’m convinced this kind of endeavour is largely under-represented in competitions such as this, where some sort of atavist fear of judgement, leads even daring artists to submit for scrutiny their most common-sense creations.
It is thus in the face of this awe-inspiring and, in my opinion, bizarre structure that sees a set of experts judging a flock of pledging artists’ strives, as if this actually made sense in the extravagance of our existence, that I decided to submit a work that is in no way striking, and to address you directly, as chief curator, commander, sheriff, shepherd or archbishop of this house of fools, to ask you to intercede for my victory. I believe you should do it for the sake of chaos and entropy, so much the topics of publications and conceited conversations at the bar, but so seldom implemented practically if not in acts of terror and far too consistent inconsistency.
Much more could be said here, and interesting debates could easily spawn from these very few lines, including one on the oddness of a handwritten letter never sent to its addressee via mail, and simply scanned and published on a website, or on the smartness or stupidity, frankness or cheekiness, of openly appealing to you for recognition. But I will not indulge in any of this. It’s not because I wrote something that I have to write everything.