So writing is easier when most of the writing is done for you.
That, sadly, is not the case with my weekly Art Attack article – like this one here which is on the SoLow Fest. Or for most of what I write here (when I do write here). However, it is the case for the SoLow Spotlight which is basically a daily interview I’m putting together featuring SoLow artists.
I love doing interviews. You get a chance to delve into an artist’s (or whoever’s) work, and then (and here comes the work) come up with questions which are original, somewhat challenging, and flattering in that they show that you actually looked at their art. The questions are designed to give the artists the opportunity to talk about what they’re doing in a way which is revealing, for us and hopefully for them as well.
Challenging the artist is important, and far easier in a face-to-face interview, which none of these SoLow articles are—and also something which I’m not particularly experienced at.
The SoLow Fest is, in a relatively insignificant way, dominating my life for the last two weeks and the next one. I say “insignificant” because it’s nothing like how it’s dominating the lives of Amanda Grove or Meghann Williams, the talented women running the fest this year, or artists like Amelia Longo and Liz Green, who created work for the fest. But I did just write an article on it for Art Attack, I am conducting ten-to-twelve interviews for it, and I am performing in Amelia’s piece.
So it’s, to some degree, what I’m breathing for the month of June.
The best part of doing interviews is culling the words of the artist, picking what’s interesting, re-arranging your own questions, and cropping the rest; pulling out a line or an idea which makes a fun title; and in the end, being able to put your name beside someone else’s hard work and idea-making. This kind of restructuring happily does not incorporate the gut-wrenching cruelty of the blank page, or the subjective helplessness and inadvertent masochism of self-editing. You get to edit someone else, which is nicer, and (at least in my case) all in the name of making them look good.