I'm 30,000 feet above the ground, crossing snowy and icy lands of China, East Russia and Greenland. I'm coming back to Chicago from Beijing biennale. The navigation line on the screen on the front of me is slowly crossing Russia in straight North and a bit East of Baikal. It's about an area where I was hiking and kayaking about 30 years ago. Maybe there are some people right now are challenging themselves as I did. Line on a screen slowly moving. I can’t take my eyes from patterns of clouds, endless plains, curves of seashore, and further white Greenland mountains.
Henry Moore remembers himself as a college student traveling frequently on a train from his parents’ home to London he’d never read being completely absorbed by landscape behind the train window. I was under the spell as well.
In Beijing I've just met hundreds of people from all over the world. So many differences and so much in common. Surprisingly I feel that to see people even more important than to see their art. Well, it's not exactly right. There've been people and there've been art, and to meet artists have been as important as to see their art. I would not say I love all I've seen. Some pieces were interesting, some look average, a few were really terrific and some... I couldn't accept as artwork. What makes something to become a piece of visual art? Without looking at the dictionary I would say "a visual statement". If an artist has to say something important I respect it and even love it if it clicks with my feelings. If I do not see a statement or I see a fake statement something inside me rejects the piece. I can't respect the art that created for marketing purposes only even if it is wrapping itself on the most trending ideas. In what I just said a lot of controversy. However those thoughts pushed me to start Absurd Diary. I was thinking to parody some kind of art that I couldn't take seriously. Very soon I slid down to the different ground. I realized that the art is only part of the picture and why should I limit myself. So, I took my iPad and I was happily making sketches for the next couple of hours.
I sketched "what is our way?" depicting a suicidal tendency of our humankind. Second one was "a fish in oil" a reminder of our responsibility in this world, then more and more... It was too easy. It was fun, but it was a way too easy and I was not sure that it's art. I feel that I continue sliding into the art that I was trying to separate myself off. However I turned some of my sketches in clay. I was sculpting reliefs in terracotta. I was working with the same size, I was writing a diary!
Sometimes I had to change a scale and my style: I created a “Memorial Pond”, a dedication to American culture and reflection of sad thoughts that old American values are getting washed away by a new reality.
Of course, there are “Mr. Fraud” and “Mrs. Lie”, my contribution to the last presidential elections.
Sometimes I feel that I should slow down with my “Diary”. It takes me off the path I consider as more important for my art and for myself. On the other hand there is no “wrong way” in art. I guess instinctively we go from the darkness to the light whatever we understand under those terms.