AKADEMIE X LESSONS IN ART + LIFE

I recently picked up at this gorgeous, pastel-hued textbook in the bookshop of the Gagosian Gallery in NYC and thought I'd share some insights from a few of the prolific women artists who have contributed their words of wisdom.

The Working Women's Club - Reading List: Akademie X Lessons in Art + Life

 

TUTOR: Marina Abramovic

AN ARTIST'S RELATION TO SOLITUDE
An artist must make time for long periods of solitude
Solitude is extremely important
Away from home
Away from the studio
Away from family 
Away from friends
An artist should stay for long periods of time at waterfalls
An artist should stay for long periods of time at exploding volcanoes
An artist should stay for long periods of time looking at fast-running rivers
An artist should stay for long periods of time looking at the horizon where the ocean and the sky meet
An artist should stay for long periods of time looking at the stars in the night sky

TUTOR: CAROL BOVE

TIME AND INFORMATION MANAGEMENT

Your time is not a separate thing from you; it's not an instrument. Time is part of what you're made from...
One question is, how do you create a way of being in the world that allows new things (ideas, information, people, places) into your life, without letting everything in? I want to point out that your tolerance for media saturation might be lower than you realize. You need to conduct an open-ended search that doesn't overwhelm you with information and at the same time doesn't limit the search in a way that pre-determines your findings. That is a puzzle. 
The first self-help book I want to recommend is The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. This book is based on the idea of artistic recovery, similar to Alcoholics Anonymous, but it's recovery for a stuck artist. I don't consider myself stuck, but I still get a lot out of most of the exercises.

TUTOR: MICHELLE GRABNER

Are there things you would advise artists to do on a daily basis?

Make time for idleness and boredom. If you reading art blogs on a daily basis and following Jerry Saltz on Facebook, you are screwed.

TUTOR: MIRANDA JULY

Here's my piece of advice, the only one I could come up with: your life right now is as real as it will ever be. It won't be more real in the future, when you get into or out of college or into or out of a relationship or a job or a financial quagmire of a health problem. In fact, the things keeping you back - these embarrassing, boring, stupid obstacles - are the heart of what it is to be human. They're the whole reason for making and needing art. So you might as well go ahead and begin in whatever way you can right now.

TUTOR: WANGECHI MUTU

My simplest advice for navigating the art market is never to operate from a place of desperation, and never undervalue yourself. Always acknowledge your position in the food chain: artists are the one who are transforming and creating and taking risks, in whichever medium they are working. So, in any professional context, never see yourself as a thing in need of salvation. Always insist on your inherent value and distinct role. They eat because you grow the food.

TUTOR: STEPHANIE SYJUCO

Be very, very selfish when it comes to making time for the studio because it gets eaten up incredibly quickly by outside demands - demands that seem important but can sometimes be moved past more expediently. Make some hard decisions about what conditions you really need in order to sustain your studio time, and put those things in place as best you can.

BUY THE BOOK HERE.