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Allen's addendum to International Art English

02 Sep 2013

Allen inadvertently participated in a panel on International Art English, the Triple Canopy analysis of the English language as represented in art press releases.

I didn’t listen to the entire panel, but enjoyed Allen’s small contribution:

Using the traffic example, if formal language is my work is about traffic, or this is a depiction of traffic and you describe how it’s doing that, then theoretical language wouldn’t actually be my work questions traffic, it would be what is traffic. And you’d write a text about traffic that accompanies the piece. You wouldn’t even describe the piece. That would be theoretical writing.

So International Art English is the language that results from saying that my piece is questioning traffic, and this is how it does it.

Where the International Art English article is concerned with objectively pointing, Allen’s description speculates that metaphysical consequences are implied (if not intended) by this style of writing.

Presumably most writers of art press releases don’t seek physical powers from their writing. But it’s interesting to consider how the writing might change if they did. By way of an example press release from the Triple Canopy article:

“Through an expansive practice that spans drawing, sculpture, video, and artist books, Kim contemplates a world in which perception is radically questioned. His visual language is characterized by deadpan humor and absurdist propositions that playfully and subversively invert expectations. By suggesting that what you see may not be what you see, Kim reveals the tension between internal psychology and external reality, and relates observation and knowledge as states of mind.”

In Game Genie style:

All perception questioned (World)
Expectations become inverted - playful
Expectations become inverted - subversive
Kim will show you false seeing
Add tension with internal psychology
Add tension with external reality
State of mind now has observation
State of mind now has knowledge

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