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Your Desks Are Too Heavy/and Your Walls Are Too White…

Amy Wilson

Yay, the semester is done! All that’s left is a stack of grading, but I can deal with that. It was an absolutely terrific semester — I think this was the best yet. I miss my classes already.

For whatever reason, the end of the year has me thinking a lot about my own education and its relationship to my work. I have a feeling that this will take shape a little more as I start doing the research for my classes for next year, but a few random thoughts:

I went to school (speaking of college and grad school, so 1991-1997) and wound up, just because of where I was and the time it was, studying primarily with Conceptual, Minimal, and post-Minimal artists. I don’t think I was even aware of it at the time, since I – like a lot of students – just basically took the classes available to me without really asking (if the teacher teaching the class was “famous” then all the better – but I never really questioned the ideology that they embraced).

I look back on all this and think about what a strange fit it was. I was attracted to art because it gave me a forum and a place to express something that I couldn’t express anywhere else – and that something, while I still struggle to explain what it is, is related to my personal experience in the world.

As I sit here, staring at the screen, all I can think to say to explain it is “the awkwardness of being alive,” but that’s not quite right. Maybe the best I can think of at this moment is “the awkwardness of me being alive right now.” Regardless of my fumbling with the best way to say it, the point is that I was always very interested in trying to capture bits of myself as an individual – my thoughts, feelings, my inhabited self (if that’s not too artsy). And in turn, I’ve always been interested in work that speaks to the same thing for other people.

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