the land of doers
"doer - inch man" Jerry.
" ...the idea of opportunity, a chance to start a new, to strike it rich, to have a piece of land of one's own, to worship as one wished, to save souls, to build an empire, to try to get once more to realize the Utopian dreams that have haunted the mind of man from the beginning of recorded time."
Richard McLanathan, "Art in America: A brief history" p. 10
"The style of life produced by the New World environment strengthened their emphasis on the practical over the theoretical, leading them to prefer the doer to the thinker."
Richard McLanathan, "Art in America: A brief history" p. 11
Keeping my promise to go deeper to the initial intentions and goals of LOVELAND i mailed Jerry Paffendorf requesting a face to face talk. I attach the mail for matters of clarity:
My name is Nikos Doulos and I am involved together with Joao Evangelista in a residency program in the city of Detroit, organized by Expodium Platform For Young Artists (NL), The Yes Farm and Galleria 555.
We visited Block Party a couple of days ago and got a bit introduced to your LOVELAND project. To be honest i had come across your website a couple of months ago back in the Netherlands, but i was quite hesitant to participate.
Having spent three weeks in the city of D and trying to grasp the ethics of LOVELAND, I got myself involved in a series of discussions with various people in Detroit. There seems to be a great division between "followers" and "haters" (probably bad choice of words but i guess you get the picture).
Still incapable to built a concrete view on the project, I felt the urge to contact you in person in the hope of engaging you in a discussion that could clarify question-marks i have in regards to LOVELAND.
Me and my residency partner will be staying in Detroit until the 29th August. If you are planning to visit the city I would appreciate a face to face meeting with you, otherwise we could arrange a virtual discussion through skype.
I truly hope it would be something you would consider yourself doing.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Jerry's response was immediate and we managed to meet yesterday at Kass Cafe.
What stroke me most in our discussion was his enthusiasm to introduce us to the "insides" of his project, referring to previous actions and future plans.
Jerry is a doer.
Initiating something that is getting more and more complex, he described his act as a "cool thing to do", a project that evolves and re-shapes based on the problematics and solutions that pop-up on the way. Embracing negative criticism and misinterpretations he is totally in favor of "adaptability". With a background in Second Life design and programming, he is extremely fascinated in merging actuality with the virtual world.
To me LOVELAND is a non over-conceptualized gorilla tactic kinda like project. His obsession to maintain a certain playfulness in the way LOVELAND deals with social matters could be easily misinterpreted but is certainly innovating and of high interest.
To make things clear, I am not propagating in favor of buying 1 inch land in Detroit, but I am certainly asking to give this guy the benefit of a doubt.
Coming from a land where contextualization and analytical thought tends to weaken the agency in terms of an art practice, I cannot help but show respect to the doers, especially if they are open to discussions and criticism. After all we are here to stand in favor "learning by doing", or aren't we?