Lauren Ling

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

Month: March, 2012

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.