Re: labels

From: Michael Betancourt (email suppressed)
Date: Thu Jun 29 2006 - 07:46:45 PDT

I think this is an important discussion for us to have.

*> <>*

 Makes an important point (or seems to) I'd like to see the piece itself. It
suggests that there is a consensus aspect to the qualities of a work--in
this case, "characters"--that exceeds any single person's perspective. [This
seems kind of obvious to me, but I know it gets lost in the considerations
of some critical theory.] Maybe we can identify some of these aspects that
determine the "value" judgements.

well in art school it was hammered into my brain that artwork viewing is
> subjective

That would mean there's no criteria for making decisions.
(Or that all criteria are meaningless, arbitrary. Perhaps they are, but we
are still judged by them even if they are arbitrary.)

So, did everyone in your class always get graded an "A" no matter what they
did? If not, then there are criteria and your teachers lied to you. On the
other hand, if they did do this, they did a disservice to their students
going out into the world of galleries, festivals, etc. where their work is
chosen or not by other people for reasons that are not disclosed, but whose
reasons appear to be fairly consistent.
I'd like to know what those criteria are.

but as well it is
> experiential
> i think there is very set criteria

There certainly appear to be. I would like to know what they are, (or what
we think they are).

within known comfort levels
> (as in psychological models)
> basing judgement of good/bad on
> what we have experienced - what we know
> leads often to an elitist nature

That's a jump. Without identifying these bases for judgement, we can't make
a judgement about them at all. If anything this is a rush to judgement.

and as we have been posting about
> judging whether the art aligns with criteria of
> white male identity models

I haven't said anything about white, blue orange or other color male,
female, transgender, etc identity or otherwise.
What makes you think this discussion is automatically about that?
Do you think this is where all "values" come from?

i wonder if any festivals let viewers vote?
> (way too democratic i bet)

Some festivals do have an audience's choice award, so yes, some do.

base thought processies lead to our 'prestigious' judges - we need 'gods'
> and 'kings'
> (on accounta we are schmucks and unbeautiful
> just as our own selves)
> you would think 'experimental' would make a 'new' model in festival
> activity
> i have been in some that don't have 'winners'
> but...
> as far as what we call the criteria of judgement
> calling things stuff and labeling can b as off

The only way to know if its off or not is to identify the criteria for the
decisions. We can't just claim it's off without knowing how the decisions
were/are being made--what their basis is.

If we can't even identify the parameters of what these criteria are, then we
cannot be making judgements about them, their appropriateness (or not), or
even if they should change--because we _literally_ have no idea what we're
talking about.

Saying the "medium" (film/video) matters is great, but why does it matter?
How does it effect the interpretation of the result, and (more important)
what difference does that make for the judgement of the film's "value"?

Michael Betancourt
Des Moines, IA USA
the avant-garde film & video blog

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