Friday, January 25, 2013

Richard Serra on Becoming an Artist

"When you become interested in the investigation of process, you aren’t concerned with the psychology of what you’re doing nor what it’s going to look like when it’s done. It gives you a way of proceeding in relation to the material, the body, and making, that divorces you from any notion of metaphor, any notion of easy imagery.

Watch the segment on Richard Serra from Art21's "Space"

What artists do is they invent strategies that allow themselves to see in a way they haven’t seen before, to extend their vision. Various artists do it in different ways: Cezanne did it in his way, Pollock did it in his way… 

What’s interesting about artists is they constantly come up with ways of informing themselves by inventing tools or techniques or processes that allow them to see into a material manifestation in the way that you would not if you dealt with standardized or academic ways of thinking…. 

One constantly tries to invent ways of seeing into what one is doing so you don’t get into some lockstep notion of how to do what you do. I have to invent new strategies in order not to go back to something that’s just a reflex motion."

- Richard Serra

The Serra quote above is transcribed from "Richard Serra: Tools and Strategies," a short video spot in which Serra explains his way of working as an artist and the specific methods involved in creating his art. Click the caption beneath the screen shot below to view the clip on Art21's "exclusives" page.

Richard Serra Spills the Beans