journalist Stéfan Thériault visits my studio – filming the printing process of a linoleum cut created for Harper’s magazine – presentation of original assigned art works with their actual editorial or book publications.
Even so it is an evidence that English speaking language has become the ‘A’ international communication language I am always surprise when visiting different parts of the world to meet with French speaking people in communities that remain so sincerely dedicated to preserve and utilize the legacy of their culture. As an artist I am using a sort of ‘none speaking’ language, venturing into the use of ‘graphics ‘ while aiming [ pretentiously/naive ] being understood by others, regardless of their language and culture. Why is that so? I was a very mediocre words user to start with, regardless of the language, missing mental flexibility in a field that I assumed too conceptual and pre-structure, not exactly my cup of tea for expressing myself. My first spoken language was Catalan, switching to French at the age of five year old did not feel truly natural, in addition my father talent for languages kept me inhibited. Eventually overcoming somehow my disfunction made me first part of the French speaking community and later on as I traveled and worked for international medias I became identified, for better or worse, as a ‘representative’ … depending how people’s prejudice worked, for or against my favor! My ‘accent ‘ as a bar code?
Expressing ideas and views in one language versa an other it is not just switching gears to come across the same things but rather making use of let say …different stove, pans and pots and ingredients. No doubt one will manage to make ‘a’ meal, but quiet not the same one! The nuances, the flowing, the rhythm and even the references will change…does it truly matter? It is our ultimate choice to decide if it does or not, for as long as it is not harmful or overpowering to others. It is so easy to be carried away over boundaries of disrespect while isolating ourselves behind the veil of predefine language/tool like protecting ourselves intrenched behind ‘machine guns’…
journalist Stéfan Thériault first question: As I am working for the press, am I an artist or a journalist?
Some activities are defined and inclosed, but other flow into one an other. It comes from a very long tradition of having images and words associated, and I just happen to belong to it. Regardless if the materials or tools to support them are ancient or modern has not been able to change this fact … before it become sold by an art merchant ‘ visuals’ were part and representation of the ordinary events of our ancestors daily lives…paintings on caves, engraved stones, woods and potteries – one can claim them treasures worth being inside museum vaults or nothing more than the equivalent of ephemeral newsprint or the minute to minute replaced world news events on the web.
If an image carries a message, an opinion, an information, an invitation to reflection then it could qualify as journalistic, however it is very challenging to try to keep it that way as it may fall very easy into the propaganda world, which is again part of the merchant’s [ or ] and the political world. Bottom line in any case being, what is the true image intention and who realy benefits from it ?
Broadcasting day to be annonced.
? linoleum cuts, photographs and texts copyright © Raymond Verdaguer, 2012