The chaotic nature of art making

Making Of / 05 May 2020

In this blog post I'd like to share some thoughts I had while creating my latest work. It proved to be, once again, a lot more chaotic than expected.

Retrospectively it's easier to see how the whole thing only resembles linearity and all I really had was an understading of an intention to create the artwork in question. Everything else is just a big drama.

Even before starting this project I knew the process would look something like this:

Intention > sculpting > hair modelling > shading > lighting > rendering > editing

This seemingly linearity is misleading and clearly seen through when breaking each step down even further. I found myself going back and forth between 'steps' so many times that I even questioned if I knew anything at all. Human culture unintentionally makes us believe that it's all about the steps. It sells really well. How is everyone doing it but me?

This dichotomy of planning and action brings me back to the fact of the limited human perspective on all things and it reminds me of this passage of a great book by Carlo Rovelli, The Order of Time:

The idea that a well-defined now exists throughout the universe is an illusion, an illegitimate extrapolation of our own experience.

And later on when the author talks about Ludwig Boltzmann:  

The notion of “particularity” is born only at the moment we begin to see the universe in a blurred and approximate way. Boltzmann has shown that entropy exists because we describe the world in a blurred fashion. He has demonstrated that entropy is precisely the quantity that counts how many are the different configurations that our blurred vision does not distinguish between. Heat, entropy, and the lower entropy of the past are notions that belong to an approximate, statistical description of nature.

... entropy, as Boltzmann fully understood, is nothing other than the number of microscopic states that our blurred vision of the world fails to distinguish.

"Extrapolation of our own experience". Damn...

Anyway, this is perfectly stated and it says so much about what we call personal experience. The way it all relates back to art making, to me, is that I can't really explain how one step follows another in my own real-time experience. I extrapolate my experience by the use of language thus creating layers of concepts and layers of unquestioned assumptions about everything. All I have is a blurry view of the whole thing as it happens.

I always wonder how the tiniest of self-correcting mechanism takes place when sculpting say a small area of the human ear: how in the fuck, even though I am aware of things like shape hierarchy and shape flow, my hand is not moving a tenth of an inch to either side. The instant-to-instant feedback feels so fast and natural that I find no place to put any more intention than to when nature calls and you just have to get up or when waking up in the morning. 

Techniques, rules, experiences are nothing but blurry reflections of that which has acted on our nervous system in the past. By taking it even further "stuff" is no longer "stuff" and not even causation makes sense anymore. It all just seems to happen, through the chaos.

Explaining things only serve the purpose of sharing some sort of coherent information so to help others or fulfilling some kind of need of approval. All these false beliefs puts us further away from the natural flow of meaningful art creation. In reality, it is more like letting go of a rock from the edge of a cliff and seeing where it lands, but then the paradox: you didn't even take the rock up there yourself.

I will leave it at that for now and hopefully you will understand what I'm saying here by watching the making of video:

My artwork: Terence Mckenna Tribute
Terrence Mckenna Technical shots
Book: The Order of Time
Store: My online course on sculpting and more
My instagram