As part of his new research project for If I Can’t Dance’s Performance in Residence programme, curator Jacob Korcyznski is spending two weeks in Amsterdam to execute with a volunteer group an instructional work that Lucy Lippard submitted to the Projects Class at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1969. An initiative of artist David Askevold, the Projects Class solicited instructions from artists that he and his students would then carry out. For the inaugural class, Lippard was invited to write and submit a proposal alongside Dan Graham, Sol LeWitt, Joseph Kosuth, Douglas Huebler, Lawrence Weiner, Mel Bochner, Robert Smithson, and Robert Barry. Lippard’s instruction was an exercise in image making and writing that would inform the process of her novel I See / You Mean (1979).
In the context of a small research group, a daily photograph will be taken for two weeks at the same place and at the same time. Each photograph pictures the participants in approximately the same position in relation to each other. Each photograph is described in writing, and text and image are combined in different ways. On Thursday 31 January, at the end of the two weeks, the project will be presented publically at Cinema de Uitkijk in Amsterdam at 9pm.
The realization of Lippard’s instruction will also provide a frame for a series of private research meetings during which the spheres informing the research will be explored in depth via the viewing of related films (Lis Rhodes, Joyce Wieland), and the reading of related texts (Kathy Acker, Georges Perec).
This intense two-week period marks the start of Jacob Korczynski’s research into Lippard’s experimental novel. In the coming year Korczynski will be looking into the relations between Lippard’s interrogation of text and image in the novel, and the simultaneous exploration of the subjective role of the camera in feminist film practices of that time, particularly the first three feature films of Babette Mangolte.
A project submitted to Projects Class, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Fall 1969
A. A group of people (anywhere from five to fifteen) are photographed in the same place and approximately the same position in relation to each other every day at the same hour for two weeks. (No diversion from the conventional group photograph taken for school yearbooks, Knights of Columbus annual picnics, etc.) The people need not wear the same clothes or pose exactly the same way each day, but the immediate impression should be almost identical.
B. These photographs are developed and dated (a record about what one person is wearing each day, or something similar, should be kept each day so that the dates will be accurate.); each photograph is then described in writing, in detail, either by the person (or persons) who took the pictures or by someone who was not present at the picture taking. (Note which case was chosen.)
C. Put the photographs together with the texts in one of the following manners:
1. Both pictures and texts in chronological order.
2. Pictures in chronological order, but texts scrambled (they are still dated though).
3. Texts in chronological order but pictures scrambled (and dated).
4. Scramble the whole thing in some totally random manner so that sometimes pictures are with their proper texts and sometimes not (still dated), and so that the time sequence is broken entirely: “illustration” and text diverge.
If more than one person is doing the project, each one should take a different last step (and take his own photographs of different groups from the others).
Lucy R. Lippard