WHAT IS THIS ABOUT?

January 20th, 2011

 

Welcome! I’m a New York based musician, writer, artist & father, & this is my sporadically-updated spiel-space for everything from arts & culture to meditation on technology, existence, God and the universe.

I love art in just about any form — from song & dance, to paintings & film, to food wine & everything else in between that we humans make or express & which can, to borrow from Lewis Hyde, “revive the soul” — & I also love writing about art. I try to do this daily (if life permits — lately it has not) through the vehicle of my “Art of the Day” project; the writing usually takes the form of impromptu poems or poem-prose in response to the art object at hand.

This process of responding to art with art is known as ekphrasis. However, whereas today this term is mainly used to refer to written art composed in response to visual art, I feel closer to the spirit of the older meaning of ekphrasis, which allows for more freedom in media both responded to and used to respond: “a rhetorical device in which one medium of art tries to relate to another medium by defining and describing its essence and form, and in doing so, relate more directly to the audience, through its illuminative liveliness.” See the ekphrasis wiki entry for more information.

Spontaneity is key to the “Art of the Day” project — I respond to an art object in writing as quickly as possible, ideally moments after seeing (or hearing, or reading) a piece for the first time, in order to capture my feelings and thoughts about the piece at hand in their freshest, rawest (and sometimes messiest) state. What I lose in formality, coherence & narrative I try to make up for in emotion, urgency & a sense of discovery. I hope you’ll agree & enjoy.

I also use this site to share my own art & music occasionally.

 

Thanks for swinging by, & drop me a line sometime & tell me what you think — or just pass me something you’d like me to review/feature, I’m always game for new stuff to go on about.

 
 

Comments (7) To “WHAT IS THIS ABOUT?”

  1. william said:

    hii snailcrow
    just happened to stumble on your art of the day thing about our ‘mr magic’ song. thanks for the good words.
    If you want to get back to me with an address I’ll send you a copy of our latest CD.

    best wishes
    william (and the Native Hipsters)


  2. snailcrow said:

    William,

    I much enjoyed writing about your music and I’m glad to hear from you! “Mr. Magic” is pure joy, I’ve already put it on 3 comps for friends since I discovered it on blip.fm. I emailed you separately my mailing address and I’ll write up a review and post it here when the CD arrives. Keep making music and take care! -Chris / Snailcrow


  3. Matthew Garrison said:

    Hi Chris,

    I just found your mention of my work on Governor’s Island. Your thoughtful reflections are greatly appreciated. And please keep me posted on your projects and performances.

    Thank you,
    Matthew


  4. SnailCrow said:

    Matthew — thanks for taking the time to read my post and write back! I greatly enjoyed encountering and writing about your work. I’m trying to post here more often, including things about my latest projects — stay tuned. Also if you have additional work you’d like reviewed, please feel free to email me details. Cheers! -C


  5. Jess B said:

    Your new photo is so happy and adorable! Carry on, brotha! :)


  6. Suzanne Daniels said:

    Hi Chris,

    Happily, I ran into your site while chasing down images of Laurie Hogin’s Night Terrors panels. Wonderful, aren’t they? Enjoyed your accompanying poetic fragment as well. I am also a big fan of the ekphrastic, your professed love for which also raises the question: Where the heck is your entry for Robert Smithson? This site already carries an impressive roll call of the genre-be-damned that I love so welll–clearly a work of devotion and celebration of eclectic taste, but I’d argue that Smithson’s regrettably short oeuvre (like his life), deserves a place here: for the origins of earthworks and the materiality of text, but also for the curious and almost hermetic treatment of the ekphrastic in his works taken as a body: generically hybridized treatments of his self-referential works, which form strands of communication between physical monument, site and corresponding “nonsite,” essays, reviews, and other writings, as well as drawings, incorporating language. Yeah, yeah, I didn’t finish my dissertation ;) So thanks for the tour, much to learn here. SD


  7. S.Crow said:

    Hi Suzanne — yes, Hogin’s Night Terrors are outstanding. I first met them in an issue of Harper’s. I always meant to follow up on her and post more about her. Thanks warmly for stumbling upon my site and for the thoughtful words. I’ve let the ekphrastic mission kind of lapse recently, owing to a lot of simultaneous projects and obligations in my life, but I really miss keeping the site up and posting about art as I did with Hogin. I’m inspired now to really re-start!

    Smithson — I respect his methods and efforts, but I feel like I’d need to be at his earthworks to really appreciate them, or hover over them in a helicopter, or view them via drone-video or something. That said, some of his spiral-works do have impact as image, and I’m going to meditate on one and write. Thank you for this strong endorsement! No one’s requested a piece to write about before.

    Any other artists you recommend I post about? Let me know! :)


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