i know from the get go that this is an unanswerable question, in that inspiration can come from any source at any time from each individual. for example, as i just sat down to write my blog post, with one hour before a BBQ and an iced bottle of gin to greet me, i had nothing, not even a subject. write, dont think!! i glanced across the room, filled with enough art to inspire a league of art writers, and wondered what it was, fundamentally, that precipitated the production of these artworks.
inspiration is a seed. a thought. an idea. this last is fundamental to me as i am a conceptualist, but doesnt every work of art start with an idea? perhaps not. expressionist painters must be screaming in their own special way at me right now. it makes me wonder when the idea of the idea for an artwork arises. does it come after the work is made? before? during maybe?
my recent work with gillian mcconnell and the OXOgraphy collective, for example, was already realized way before the paint hit the canvas, or the box printer received the files. but in turn, the inspiration for that inaugural exhibit had already been well established through months of exploring an idea. in fact i cant even recall what the initial inspiration was. i can talk about my exposure to 60s art, Indiana and Warhol among them. i can talk about my friendship and exposure to General Idea, the toronto collective of inventive appropriationists who have always inspired me. i can talk about my own exploring with my colleague gillian, who has written and workshopped extensively on the topic with the art therapist and sculptor louise goodman. but for the life of me, that initial seed germ is lost to me.
maybe, just maybe, inspiration is just a key, a portal to art production, and unimportant in the development of the work. maybe it is the same thing as popping that cork. an excuse to put the brush to canvas or to boot up the computer.
i will invite others to weigh in here, as i am now late for a classic aussie grill dinner. with actual aussies. cheers.