Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Yay Exams!

I can't believe how much studying I just got done in 3 hours. It's as much as I did all day yesterday, sequestered in my condo scribbling on index cards for hours interspersed with snacks and sleeping. I am still a little behind schedule. I am done studying for art except for reviewing slide ids right before the exam (I am probably not going to confuse Two Fried Eggs and a Kebab by Sarah Lucas with Huang Yong Ping's 1987 "A History of Chinese Painting" and "A Concise View of Modern Painting" Washed in a Washing Machine for Two Minutes (both above) but if we are supposed to remember the names of Pollack's or Rothko's works... thank God for the grading curve.)

Slide IDs are important because if you lose points on them it looks like you didn't even take the class, it is like free points compared to the essay questions. I have stayed about 2 weeks behind on the readings which means that I had a few essays I hadn't even read. One of them makes me glad I'm not majoring in art and won't have to take an upper division HAVC class. Here is one sentence from a James Gaywood essay on the yBa: "The "neo borgeois" simultaneously acknowledge their own structural habitus, and align themselves alongside a high-brow epistemology that has subsumed the "NBs" ironic postmodern snub to intellectuality, ideologically homogenising a structurally multi-perspective audience to an appreciation of objectified surface pastiche an embodiment of those reproducing signs of late consumer capitalism." I was trying to understand the words but right when I got to "ironic postmodern snub" I lost the thread, reread it, lost it again, and just pushed on to the end of the page. There are too many things in that sentence, I can not hold them all in my mind.

I tried to keep a list of words to look up like "conflating" and "bricoleur", but it interfered with the momentum that let me read the thing. It is okay that I do not know what semiotics are. Maybe I will get a tattoo that says "coterie" and people will ask me what it means, and I will say, "I don't know." and it will be fine, because I don't have to know. Except I do, for my exam tomorrow.

I love this so much. It's Damien Hirst's The physical impossibility of death in the mind of someone living, 1991, and the materials are given as glass, steel, silicone, shark, 5% formaldehyde solution. I invented one before I saw it, but mine was just going to have a brooding tentacled animal in a corner and the water much less clear. But his is better.

Do you know what would be awful? Formaldehyde snowglobes. But I still want one.

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