Lauren Ling

-the writing, portfolio, and studio practice of Lauren Ling-



I am _________________

The _______________________of _________________________
(identifying noun) (persons name)

The _______________________ of _______________________
(identifying noun) (persons name)

And the ____________________ of ________________________
(identifying noun) (persons name)

Very few people know I ___________________________________________
(something very few people know)

I am a ______________ , ___________________________________________
(tree) (why you are this tree)

I am a _______________, _______________________________________________
(flower) (why you are this flower)

I am __________________, _________________________________________________________
(city) (why you are this city)

I am a ___________ , I am a ______________________________ , I am ______________________________
(sound) (something that fills a need) (verb)



This is really old, but I needed a place to post it for a template. So here it is.


cowbird- in hospital rooms we dance



living room
empty field
dinner table


shared experience


create art in public
host a party
make dinner for a group of people
start a conversation
ask a question
start a band

Excerpt from Roland Barthe’s “Camera Lucida”

“One day, quite some time ago, I happened on a photograph of Napoleon’s youngest brother, Jerome, taken in 1852. And I realized then, with an amazement I have not been able to lessen since: “I am looking at eyes that looked at the Emperor.” Sometimes

Latitude, Longitude

I have been sitting in on Lee Walton’s MFA graduate seminar this semester. The academic setting is something that I find to be stimulating and engaging. I miss school.

A few weeks ago in class we exchanged gifts. The gift had to help the recipient some way in their practice as an artist. Alice, with whom I have taken a class before, drew my name. My gift was a list of eight latitude/longitude coordinates. No real instructions. Just coordinates, which have been in my mind a lot since. Alice knows I am interested in place, and works describing or seeking to understand a given space.

I have decided to make a body of work, creating visual and written investigations of each coordinate, at each coordinate. I am uncertain of how the work will be brought together; I am anticipating that the process will bring to me logical next steps.

My parameters for myself are as follow:

  1. I will not make work at more than one coordinate in a single day
  2. I will not return to a coordinate to remake work; at least not for this piece
  3. At each site I will create a verbal 20 word description, a photogram, a pinhole, an environmental portrait, and a drawing or other single additional physical documentable response


john cage: some rules for students and teachers

john cage: some rules for students and teachers

RULE ONE: Find a place you trust, and then try trusting it for awhile.

RULE TWO: General duties of a student – pull everything out of your teacher; pull everything out of your fellow students.

RULE THREE: General duties of a teacher – pull everything out of your students.

RULE FOUR: Consider everything an experiment.

RULE FIVE: be self-disciplined – this means finding someone wise or smart and choosing to follow them. To be disciplined is to follow in a good way. To be self-disciplined is to follow in a better way.

RULE SIX: Nothing is a mistake. There’s no win and no fail, there’s only make.

RULE SEVEN: The only rule is work. If you work it will lead to something. It’s the people who do all of the work all of the time who eventually catch on to things.

RULE EIGHT: Don’t try to create and analyze at the same time. They’re different processes.

RULE NINE: Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It’s lighter than you think.

RULE TEN: “We’re breaking all the rules. Even our own rules. And how do we do that? By leaving plenty of room for X quantities.” (John Cage)

HINTS: Always be around. Come or go to everything. Always go to classes. Read anything you can get your hands on. Look at movies carefully, often. Save everything – it might come in handy later.

Some distant summer.

I didn’t see the snow.


Caffeine. from Lauren Ling on Vimeo.

I haven’t drank coffee in over six months. This morning, for the first time in some time, I woke up and missed it.

Coffee and I have a long history, starting back when my face became a permanent fixture on my dad’s coffee mug, decal style. Then dad decided to open a bookstore with a coffeeshop inside it. Destiny was drawing me.

When I traveled to Australia I kicked the habit. Even worked at a coffeeshop. I took up tea, and was glad I did when I made it to China. Jasmine.

Back home in North Carolina, I made up for lost time. One cup with cream and sugar became 1/2 a pot black or a 4-shot Americano. For a time I called it a quad and wore a green apron. For a time. Coffee was associated with ability to function as I slowly forgot that water wasn’t always hot and black.

In 2010 I made this video as homage to the aroma and the jitters. Now in 2012 the french press is reserved for loose leaf chai tea.

But this morning, I missed it.


You can now find my work within the cowbird collaborative.

“Cowbird is a small community of storytellers, focused on a deeper, longer-lasting, more personal kind of storytelling than you’re likely to find anywhere else on the Web.”

Find me here: