This week we explored on the concept of Do-It-With-Others (DIWO), referencing to many artworks and artists to understand the complexity of this theme. We strive to learn more about its logicality and function, thereafter apply it to our own mini-DIWO project, and provide some after thoughts.
With our understanding of DIWO, we narrowed down a few pointers that we envisioned for our DIWO project, being: extensive participation of audience that can affects the final artwork, social interaction between audience and artist as well as negating the importance of aesthetic quality.
We came up with our work “Fear-Love”, which is an experimental artwork where we invite audience to draw out the first thought they have when given the themes “Fear” and “Love” separately. The drawings are done in black and pink ink;”Fear” drawings done in pink ink while “Love” drawings done in black ink to reverse the colour psychology. The goal of this artwork is for audience to comprehend the fundamental process of psychological functions like fear and love, and comparing it to one another when they see each others’ drawings.
With the final work presented above, we split the themes into two panels. The post-mortem review for the audience would indicate the effectiveness of the artwork, whereby audience can look at one another’s deepest fear or love, thereby making interaction with the fear/love as a conversation starter.
In the spirit of being truthful to the purpose of art as DIWO intends, we have many improvements to be made for our experiment after the first trial. Firstly, there should be a controlled environment to prevent audience from interacting before the execution of the artwork, thereby making the final work biased as the project aims to be spontaneous in nature. Secondly, the aforementioned biased discussion would take away the artist’s control of the artwork due to a unintentional curating through the audience’s discussion, this would be discussed in my essay listed below. Lastly, there is no anonymity when audience are taking turn to draw out their greatest fear/love, preventing the impact of the post-mortem review.
(Controlled environment to negate shifting responsibility of artist and curator)
After the readings on various artists, we have seen many examples of DIWO, and that provided a great inspiration on how DIWO projects should be ran to eliminate problems and expedite effectiveness. We can reference to the “Sheep Market” (http://www.thesheepmarket.com/), where the drawings are uploaded to the web to include anonymity in the participation, as well as garner effective labour instead of asking the audience to draw one by one. This solution eliminates all the issues mentioned above.
In the after thoughts of making our own DIWO project and understanding its roots as a participatory art movement, I have gained insights of how labour-intended artworks proceed. This is especially because our work required the involvement of other people to draw for us, which is similar to the “Sheep Market”. After reading Marc Garrett’s essay, we were exposed to the idea of trickle down authority over the art industry and this led on to the monetary facade of the art world. This prompted the thought of how DIWO can be an outlier off-shooting from the main economy of commercial art.
In this sense, there is a difference between how Damien Hirst or Andy Warhol hires people to execute their artworks for them. Andy Warhol (who explored mass-produced art in the 1960s) explored art with his friends in this art studio called the Factory. Damien Hirst, a contemporary artist, who is famous for his spot paintings, hires other people to paint his most famous art pieces. According to Business Insiders, out of 1340 paintings, he only made 25 pieces himself. In this situation, how does one Do-It-With-Others art piece differ to another if there is monetary transaction involved, even if the people painting the works are so called volunteering, especially for a notable artist like Hirst, where even an internship possibility could mean a career boost?
I would assume that the only difference in the artworks in relation to DIWO stems from a perspective argument. DIWO is a highly saintly process that inculcates a more holistic approach to art-making compared to the economic drive in Hirst’s works. If and when we approach our audience with money to draw for our project Fear-Love, the work itself should and no longer be categorised as DIWO as the sanctity of volunteer-based participation is corrupted.
Overall, it was a diwow.