“The Alien,” aka: Jesse Rivard, has an offering that’s not a comic, and barely a ‘zine, with regular 8.5x11 sheets simply stapled flat together with no form of binding. It’s an eclectic melange of notes manually stapled to pages, random quotes, blurry images, and poor spacing choices, rarely a complete sentence, riddled with capitalization inconsistencies, misspellings, and other assorted typos. It is rife with them. Hold on, let me find some of my favorites… oh yes, it’s things like “blasphamy” instead of blasphemy, “travelled” vs. traveled, “practable” vs. practicable, “inadvert’ence”(?), “any-ways” (which is wrong two different ways), and “wagging war” (which, I suppose, could be something that dogs do when they fight?). I think the cryptic prose style is a deliberate wannabe e. e. cummings aesthetic desire, but the end result is typically an obtuse brain bender like “where of we can read, that we can not speak, there of we can imagine. there fore that can not be the final sentence of the laws of nature, where as i just wrote another one.” I’m picking it apart deservedly, though when you take a step back and look at it holistically, I will say that there is some fascinating imagery at play and sort of a fun rudimentary design, but the meaning, if any, is totally lost through these bizarre formatting and typographic choices/mistakes. Regular Poopsheet Foundation readers will remember that I work in a Contemporary Art Museum, so I consume a lot of envelope-pushing styles and mixed media installations which can really stretch the definition of “art” to its breaking point, but I sometimes wonder with artists like this, if they’re actually consciously saying something. Are they really exploring an idea or a technique – or just being weird sans intent and attempting to pass it off as art? If you throw enough stuff out there haphazardly, something’s bound to stick eventually. When an audience claims they “don’t get it,” the artists then defend the work by claiming the failure is the audience’s lack of open-mindedness or even their small intellect, it couldn’t possibly be a failure of the artist’s actual creativity, clarity, or skill. Don’t you believe that for a second. It’s a ruse. The faux creator invents a sketch of an actual artist for themselves to inhabit, without any of the discipline of thought or craft required to achieve the earned status that an actual artist possesses. Bottom line? It’s not that I didn’t get it. It’s that you didn’t say anything. Grade C-.
|< Prev||Next >|