主题：徐坦 刘铮 孙原&彭禹 谢南星 宋冬 王音 王庆松 史金淞 李永斌 何云昌
新作：沈敬东 刘子建 李继开 金心明 陈孟昕
Issue No. 83(2013)
Theme: When Reaction Becomes Attitude,When Attitude Becomes Method
Academic Host: Cui Cancan
A.T: Xu Tan, Liu Zheng, SunYuan&Peng Yu, Xie Nan Xing, Song Dong, Wang Yin, Wang Qingsong, Shi Jinsong, Li Yongbin, He Yunchang
A.N: Shen Jingdong, Liu Zijian, Li Jikai, Jin Xinming, Chen Mengxin
When Reaction Becomes Attitude, When Attitude Becomes Method
学术主持：崔灿灿 ACADEMIC HOST: CUI CANCAN
The feature is a tribute to the curator Harold Zelman. In the year of 1969, Zelman organized the exhibition called “Live in Your Mind, When Attitude Becomes Form” in Kunstmuseum Museum, Switzerland, which opened the decades-long era of creation by the curator through exhibition, and at the same time also makes “exhibition (theme proposal, program discussion, and space design)” become the classic form of exchange of artistic information.
Since attitude (thinking) must need form for presentation, the respect for new form as shown in “Live in Your Mind” is secretly growing in the mind of Zelman in the course of his “anti-form”. Although he values more the fortuity and uncertainty brought about by materials, emotions and idea in the generation process of “new form”, unfortunately, Zelman is still a formalist in nature.
All glory shall become history and the great moments created by Zelman have become the historical classic discourse that we have to fight against and get rid of. “When Attitude Becomes Form” ultimately makes Zelman in consensus with Greenberg’s avant-garde form. Of course, this does not mean the end of form. Any work that can be seen or felt is a form, but the glory of form must be decentralized as evidence for the existence of art.
When innovation of form is no longer the aim, change in communication method and in mode of transmission becomes one of the possibilities to promote art. Form is no longer a kind of absolute power aesthetics, although it needs to carry aesthetics in the exchange; form is no longer the result of attitude, instead, attitude itself is a form.
Nowadays, what weighs is not to express or how to express, but reaction and re-reaction as well as output and input in the process of dissemination and effective dissemination. When sculpture turns to installation, what is changed is not only the form, but also the means of communication and perception; the single “see” has changed to the multi-touch “experience”. When photography turned to movie, it shifted from fixed form to flow form and from the single meaning of a classic instant to a multiple meaning which is continuously developed, decomposed, transformed and reconstructed. In this sense, form is just a tool with no charm by itself. Its charm lies in its connection to the primary means of communication of art and to cultural forces constantly remodeled in the course of exchange.
“Reaction” is the root to generate attitude, but reaction is not consistent. First, a pure physical reaction is instinctive, like a dodge from a heavy falling object. This reaction, however, cannot turn directly into attitude, it is merely a reaction itself; when heavy objects fall and people choose not to dodge, this reaction becomes an attitude. Secondly, the reaction after thinking or lead by attitude, is it completely dependent on pure rational thinking or objective judgment? The reaction of no dodging is no rational and objective reaction in a general sense; it is abandonment of and resistance against group experience by the individual. In this sense, when reaction becomes attitude, it must be caused by extreme freedom of the individual as well as the boredom of classic and repetitive behavior.
“When Reaction Becomes Attitude” is a way of looking for self-existence in the relationship and also a will to be incompatible with the mainstream way. The will formed by adherence to its own way first changes the reaction by itself, and then presents its attitude towards the world and its awareness of other objects in the way of venture to reaction.
When a style or way becomes common, alienation reaction towards universality will generate an attitude and the attitude is against the historical discourse or mainstream discourse. In the face of reality and their own problems, how the attitude of the artist is transformed in the art system becomes a problem: one way is to highly verbalize the attitude through the existing art system in order to hide or even remove the attitude; the other is to present the attitude directly with art only as a status or tool. Undoubtedly, the relationship between the two ways is not completely disassociated because the choice of the original artistic language system also means to choose an attitude, and more often than not, the art system is used for a simple presentation of attitude.
In case of the first way, when reaction or attitude is highly verbalized by art, the confrontational attitude towards the original language system would be missing. It is also impossible to produce new ways, because the public existing language system is essentially homogenized. It is difficult for unicellular reproduction to bring any new method; it just makes the artist’s self-existence demised. In this sense, the expression of attitude through the original artistic language system can only be a conservative form. Even if it also stresses experiment and expansion of language, it is only Bohemian plot of the middle class and elite group, and the promotion of language system will ultimately differ with the concern without deepening or expansion of the language system. Or, it can only be game of form, drifting from form A to form B. Yet nowadays, the high saturation and diversification of the artistic form language makes A and B no longer as distinct as in the 1960s.
However, the second way has the same problem. If the presentation of attitude only depends on the stand of the artist, attitude is only a completely self-social behavior or daily behavior and it is entirely possible to disseminate and exchange without art. In this sense, either way is faced with a problem: when reaction becomes attitudes, how can attitude stimulate new methods or new modes of communication? First, the idea of unicellular reproduction and linear development of art must be got rid of and self-independent reaction itself can function either as a method or manner. “When Reaction Becomes Attitude”, methods may occur, or it is a method by itself.
Moreover, the abandonment of absolute ration, neutrality, objective and the original art system by individuals renders communication means fresh and vivid. Bio-politics and physical experience precisely escapes the customary logic of art and control by system. The reaction occurs after the selection, but definitely not after precise measurement or careful selection. When reaction happens, it is out of control, harmful for the existing security system, and also dangerous. As an object, artistic language that artists concern about makes a variety of artistic reaction to practical issues and individual experience. In this process of reaction and re-reaction, as well as output and input, there appears exchange and a new way is likely to be found.
At the same time, the relationship between the individual’s attitude and art is not a simple cause-and-effect relationship or like carrier and tool; it is paralleled and closely related. Although art has its own existing classic form, the form is fresh in the past time, flowing in the era that produces it, which is homogeneous with or antagonistic against the needs, power, system and other factors of people in that era. Artistic communication mode and dissemination method in each period is based on the specific social exchanges and dissemination method in that period. In short, art after World War II in the 20th century is not self-derived in art system on the basis of that in the 1920s, but generated from the reaction and re-reaction of the post-war social behavior and individual existence as well as from input to the individual by the era and output to the ear by the individual.
At present, the possibility of art originates from cognitive differences and disassociation from the collection by different individuals. “When Reaction Becomes attitude, When Attitude Becomes Method”, self-awareness is a personal and extreme political behavior and manner, as well as an individual’s pursuit of freedom, confirmation of self-existence, and limited freedom after the confirmation. Freedom of individuals may be out of control at any time, in danger at any time, and defies linguistic or logical generalization and analysis. As a result, when freedom tries to disseminate or exchange, new artistic and linguistic patters are able to appear; it is not derived from form or text, but from repeated confirmation of social and personal organizational relationship as well as movement relationship.
However, in art, any new way of exchange and dissemination will finally present a form; it still bears the traces of aesthetic activities, excited to express in the early stage. However, these do not matter, and what matters is that the social power, institutional power, and classic power is doubted and changed time and time again; the exploration of the traditional form of innovation for aesthetic taste change will be continuously moved in exchange; art itself is not a classic moment, it just organizes a way to promote the attitude of a free person. Finally work is no longer the result and form is only evidence; movement values more than any classic moment of art, the power of art is completely decentralized and the value of art lies in how the artist becomes a legend.