Lecture by Sean Dower Fine Art Practionerople

This mornings lecture was given by an artist called Simon Dower.

The whole lecture was given over to him showing examples of his work as far back as 1983, and then explaining the thoughts and ideas behind them.

To be truthful I really did not know what to make of it all.

I know this may sound strange but I could not see the point of it all, although I could appreciate the ideas and innovations behind the projects.

When I went into the lecture theatre, there was a student sitting across from me and I asked him what the lecture was about. He said, “Theatre performance”. “Oh” I replied, “It sounds really interesting, I have seen on google people in Covent Garden performing in the street, and they are great, very much like performers centuries ago. There are always crowds of people watching them”.

He said, “I don’t think that is what is meant by performing art”.

As the lecture, ( no, I think that is the wrong word, it was more a reminiscence of his previous work) progressed I realised how wrong I had been in my perception of what is was going to be, and how wrong can you get?

I have always liked trying new things but running along side of that is a preactical side to me which likes to see a use for what I make.

As I am writing this, my thoughts have gone in another direction in that an object does not have to be physically practical, it can satisfy a purpose aesthetically in that it gives pleasure or fills a need just by touching, seeing, hearing or feeling it. In which case it is feeding the spiritual side of me, which is just as important as my physical side

One thing that I realised, is how pretentious one can be, I am thinking about myself in saying that. When he named a piece of his work, “What is dark but made out of light?”    It sounded very profound, but it turned out that h had got the title from a lolly stick. It brings one down to earth somewhat.

On thinking about it, the breadth of his work is amazing, each one so different from the other and totally off the wall in some respects, but then so original.

There are quite a number of points that he made which I shall remember and take  with me which I found quite inspirational and helpful.

These are:

If it’s not there do it yourself.

All work  is who you are, it defines your identity.

It is the spirit of what you do, not being confined to what you are studying.

Always keep a record for future use, no matter how far into the future.

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