At Wedge, our programming centers around an idea we call the Doing/Thinking Residency. Doing/thinking is an idea adopted from performance philosopher Will Daddario, which privileges doing as a way of thinking, so that the “doing of artistic and intellectual expression” merits as much attention as the physical result.1 With this reprioritization in mind, the Doing/Thinking Residency challenges conventional ideas about how artists are expected exhibit work, shifting focus from artwork-as-result to artwork-as-process. Facilitating this shift is simple but substantive—each artist is free to decide what they “do” with their time at Wedge.
First, the artist determines how they can use the space of Wedge to best support the doing/thinking inherent in their studio practice. Then, in consultation with Wedge and in flux with the artist’s process, the artist determines how to present the actions or results of this doing/thinking, including the format, timing, and duration of this presentation. By granting the artist this level of self-determination, Wedge offers artists the opportunity to subvert conventions which constrain, frustrate, or impede the full realization of their practice.
Artists are able to think and create in the space of Wedge—even non-installation based work—rather than beforehand or off-site, as is assumed with more traditional forms of exhibition. They are granted 24-hour access to the space and access to the experience and assistance of the staff, both in skilled (or unskilled) sweat equity. Staff can assist with any logistical/practical conditions which arise over the course of the residency, either in a supportive or collaborative role, at the behest of the artist. With these resources, Wedge hopes to pierce “real world” inhibitors which constrain an artist’s studio practice, while also encouraging making as a form of research or perhaps research as a form of making. Thus, as the creative work proceeds, the artist may expand their (and therefore, our) experience of said “real world.”
Wedge is, unto itself, a project. The Doing/Thinking Residency reinforces this idea, shifting away from traditional or top-down curatorial arrangements and the primacy of finished objects, and instead directs attention to the actions of artmaking, to include the thinking that happens in the course of that making. Doing is thinking—a thing-in-itself.
1. Will Daddario, “Doing Life is That Which We Must Think,” Performance Philosophy Journal 1, (2015):168-174.