Unedited conversations between artist in a productive critique discovering thesis and processes behind the work.
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Kerry James Marshall
RAMOS: thank you for joining me
how was california?
RAMOS: life-changing. .. at least Singularity University was
happy to be home
GUERRIER: i hope to see the effect of it all?
and what you have learned
RAMOS: me too - being there was a career awakening, I am hoping to keep momentum... sometimes when you have an awakening it can be fleeting
GUERRIER: let's hope it is long-lasting
i really hope so
so i've asked you here today because i want to know everything you know about Miami Art Basel
RAMOS: why is that funny
GUERRIER: like what?
some of everything isn't noteworthy
but, i get your point
RAMOS: ok ok - well let's make some ground rules
GUERRIER: where do we start?
RAMOS: perhaps it would be helpful to differentiate between knowledge and knowing
GUERRIER: is there a difference?
RAMOS: yes and i think in this case it is helpful
GUERRIER: to have knowledge is to know
RAMOS: no not really - humor this for a second
so knowledge is a collection of things of the mind
GUERRIER: there is a difference in having knowledge and having information
RAMOS: i'll rephrase the above... knowledge is a collection of information
knowing is an understanding that can't be traced
GUERRIER: knowing is also traceable understanding
so knowing reflect understanding
rather than just having information
RAMOS: maybe, yes - but for example... faith is a form of knowing
RAMOS: faith is also a form of understanding
so yes then - knowing = understanding
and knowledge = information
do we agree there?
knowledge doesn't equal info
knowledge is what you have when you know
info is the encyclopedia
knowledge is reading/understanding entries in the encyclopedia
knowledge is gained through understanding the entries in..
RAMOS: i am willing to change the equal sign for sure
so knowing is a collection of understandings
and knowledge is a collection of information
GUERRIER: knowing is active
i cant agree that knowledge is a collection of information
information is there
a collection of information is a thing
knowledge can only be gained by extracting from the collection to the point of understanding
there is a threshold to go over
to gain knowledge
GUERRIER: newton sat under a tree many times
he saw falling apples before
yet, one day, a falling apple is understood to be and effect of gravity
the info was always there
the knowledge came in time
RAMOS: Newton had knowledge that apples fell
Newton had a moment of knowing that gravity existed
GUERRIER: understanding what gravity is took time
he observed apple falling from a tree to the ground
that is knowledge about apple falling
knowledge about gravity came later
RAMOS: knowledge about gravity came way later - first there was a knowing about gravity
GUERRIER: knowledge as understanding is work.
yes, there were previous understanding of gravity
the apple falling was understood
planets orbiting stars
and correlating the two phenomenon in one theory
that is knowledge
RAMOS: ok ok - i think we have too many variables
how about we use understanding and information rather than knowing and knowledge
ok, art fairs
RAMOS: wait - just so we are clear - there was plenty of information leading to Newton's understanding of gravity
RAMOS: but the understanding of gravity as a silos is quite remarkable and untraceable
all that to say - i am interested in your understanding of Art Basel
GUERRIER: why would you say untraceable?
RAMOS: because gravity on it's own - the force itself, between two objects, is only apparent if the objects are present
however the force exist on it's own
GUERRIER: let's stop there and go back to the subject of the day.
RAMOS: sure - it is related I promise
RAMOS: so tell me about Art Basel
what is it really?
GUERRIER: it is a fair
GUERRIER: where artworks is presented, sold and distributed?
RAMOS: ok that's information
GUERRIER: partly distributed
I am not sure if it is more than that
as a fair, it is an event
and this particular one happening in miami
seems to be a big deal
what interest you about it?
RAMOS: why is it such a big deal?
GUERRIER: I am not sure frankly.
but by some some reported numbers,
by the mere fact, some other fairs happen at the same time in the different cities
but i am not sure there is another fair happening the first week December, elsewhere
the buying and selling goods occurs in markets
in the art market seems to like to be in Miami for a few days
those outside of the markets cant always very the claims of the market
it is good for Miami's economy
so, what do you find interesting about it?
RAMOS: from what you are saying, what stands out to me is that the art market goes to a warm place in the winter
GUERRIER: a warm place to do business
similar to the boat show
and the furniture show
they are all fair
we live in a city that can host such things
RAMOS: so it has little to do with our particular art market
little to do with Miami's art world
the same way boat show may not reflect Miami's boating industry
art markets are global
and Miami is global
RAMOS: well Miami has a pretty great boating market
some might say the same about art market
RAMOS: yes - i hear that ... but there is a clear disconnect between the fairs and the local scene - would you agree?
RAMOS: little integration might be more appropriate
RAMOS: you'd think that Miami artist would steal the show
RAMOS: would be the featured artist
GUERRIER: well, the art world is large
and there are many great artists who are barely visible in Miami
and during the fair week, they are still great
i love kerry james marshall's works
no one in miami can steal the show from kerry
RAMOS: on the contrary
I would see Kerry totally stealing the show
GUERRIER: KJM is always in the fair
RAMOS: what fair?
but this competitive analysis is wrong
it plays right in the hand of a capitalist market
a market that champions what it considers to be the best, the show-stopper, etc,
the idea for more Miami integration in the fair should be about sustaining Miami's art scene
GUERRIER: and boost the regional presence while a global moment is happening
RAMOS: how do you suggest we do that?
GUERRIER: we already begun
GUERRIER: art miami was a dominant
RAMOS: wait a minute - let's go back a few lines here
GUERRIER: it shifted to parallel abmb, in order to be present in the moment with the most audience
RAMOS: Kerry James Marshall is not a Miami artist
is based in Chicago
GUERRIER: He is great
and abmb allows me to see a few of his paintings every year
an art world/artmarket global moment, right here on MB
RAMOS: i agree and that's what I love about Art Basel
what Miami artist can an art basel visitor be excited about?
GUERRIER: again championing individual miami artist
i dont know
Most venues offer to the art world their best for november
maimi contributes to the event
there are good shows
one point, miami may not properly support its own
and yet wants the global art world to pay attention
RAMOS: that is a very interesting point
GUERRIER: we need to support and champion art
even if the rest of the world is not looking
RAMOS: that's how we'd sustain Miami's art scene
GUERRIER: we have not spoken about sustainability
but this is a gesture towards sustaining
my position is fixed, art fairs aren't special, they are part of the market
you never told me what interest you in art fairs?
RAMOS: nothing - i really dislike them
you never said
RAMOS: they are exhausting
nothing integral to them
last year, I spent one hour at abmb
30 minutes just inside the door talking to miami people
i barely saw anything
RAMOS: right - i enjoy watching the people at the fair more than the art work
everything feels rushed, forced, pushed
GUERRIER: that's funny
you can people watch on Lincoln rd everyday
RAMOS: not the same
this audience is very particular
i suspect many share this with you
and many who complain about abmb are complaining about things others than market, capital, stardom, sustainability
RAMOS: as an insider in the Miami art world - as an integral artist - does it feel like Miami is used, abused, stretched thin, savored, chewed up, and left to die until next year?
i'm happy you don't feel that way
GUERRIER: there is evidence pointing the other way
RAMOS: that Miami is infused with culture that lingers on to make a more potent art world?
i'm trying to get a feel for that
GUERRIER: from more and more rich people doing things in Miami
to art being in neighborhoods far from the beach