Greening Arts Practice 5 – Talks by Artist Ruth Levene and Anthropologist Megan Clinch.

This was an interesting talk by Levene and Clinch. Levene’s work is very different to the work I do, with her ‘outcomes’ being mostly ephemeral, or records of the process in photographs of walks or recorded interviews. Despite the differences, it is always interesting to hear artists speak about their practice and some nuggets of information or advice or ideas are always picked up.

Levene is interested in the dialogue with people. Her work is often an investigation into something new, delving into it from many angles, to finally decide what the work will be about and the form it will take.

One of the most interesting discussions came from another artist at the session asking her how she approaches experts she want to work with, without seeming like an idiot. Her response was to be an unapologetic idiot! She has no idea at the outset about what work she wants to make and when people ask her about that she responds that why should she know what she wants to make when she hasn’t spoken to the experts yet? If she did, she would be going in with pre-existing ideas and biases that might not be valid. Also, you are there to speak to people because they are the experts. Why should you know about what they are experts in. You go in with the enthusiasm and the interest to learn what they have to tell you.

A very interesting approach which could be applied well to collaboration work.

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