LINDA WEISS AND FRED DEWEY (BEYOND BAROQUE, ART CENTER COLLEGE OF DESIGN PASADENA LA), MADE IN, SCOTTY BERLIN, 2012... Fred Dewey: Well, because a couple of your works involve just walls of text and in some cases the photographs predominate and in some cases there is no text at all as in this video at Haymarket and then here with the piece you did in Chicago you have this transcription of the essay by American president on Lincoln, the first black American president writing about Lincoln. These are very very different and I was wondering when you were doing some earlier pieces that have just text or walls on text or predominantly text. How and why has your work developed from that to a much more site based interaction here. How would you say, what is that progression?
Linda Weiss: I think you mean that text I have written which is like credits from a film "to be in the city" this video for example. And well in this work in this concern…
Fred Dewey: What is the title of this piece hereLinda Weiss: It’s “Sunset Bullet Time (Lincoln Square Chicago) - Barack Obama (What I See in Lincoln’s Eyes)“ just very sort of documenting information title. And I became in this work especially interested in that issue you have the site…
Fred Dewey: And what site is this?
Linda Weiss: Lincoln Square
Fred Dewey: … in Chicago
Linda Weiss: … in Chicago, I figured out this later on, not at first and then it became sort of a working process that I have read that almost election campaign book "The Audacity of Hope“ and I came to that point that I figured out that there is this text that Barak Obama wrote about Lincoln and so for me it’s a perfect come together. Also that historical issue that there is a turning point in both, historically and politically and that was for me obvious that I should take this for that piece.
Fred Dewey: So, to some extent you were trying to represent or capture a moment in time in which something is changing.
Linda Weiss: In this piece that was the main idea.
Fred Dewey: What about some of the other pieces what do you think the relationship to site is, to architecture, to urban space?
Linda Weiss: Well, in this one image which I have done five years ago and a big work came out of it, relentless structure
Fred Dewey: Do you just wanna just read the text that’s on the photo…
Linda Weiss: “I didn’t grow up reading books, either, so I didn’t escape into a world of poetry or fantasy. Television gave me all my information.“
Fred Dewey: Where is that from?
Linda Weiss: It's from the biography of a political TV correspondent in New York, local worker at NY1, Dominic Carter, who is also African American and was born in the Bronx under really hard circumstances and as well with the educational system and had been raped by his mother, his mother was schizophrenic and so. I did put this together with this economic and power metaphor, that I per chance met somebody who let me do some shots in an institution which works with banks worldwide, and I did find that interesting to put a person who had really difficult circumstances together with that institution of power and metaphor of power and, the (white) counterpart in this piece was Alan Greenspan who at that time wrote his biography. I was really interested in understanding the financial system this was before that breakdown in 2008 had taken place and before that I became very interested in reading how his idea of financial system he describes. So I did put this together and I did put two theorist together, Pierre Bourdieu and Ervin Goffman and you can’t, when you read, this is a video as well, you can’t see which quotation is from whom. This was also for me interesting or important. But this photos for me how that happed, it was just great.
Fred Dewey: And what’s the title of this piece?
Linda Weiss: relentless structure
Fred Dewey: So, what do you think is, what are some of the challenges that you see for being a female artist who is dealing with former questions like this and trying to do so in a way which also increases a sense of power, do you see power and powerlessness is any issue in your work, both as a woman and also as an artist, as an female artist in relationship to the art establishment.
Linda Weiss: Power is really an issue in my work, but powerlessness, I haven’t done a piece about powerlessness until now, maybe in the future, but power is always a question for me, absolutely.
Fred Dewey: Why?
Linda Weiss: Sort of how to escape form suppression or how suppression is constituted, or just descriptions how people live. And for me I have started with studying economics as well and for me is also, of course very important how that economical system is functioning. This was at that time for me interesting, I’m also working for a bank... But when that crisis came out I at once lost my job, never happened... I have doing this installation of their things, and it was exactly that week when they figured out if they will, what will they do with Lehmann or if they give that morgage from seven hundred million,
Adrienne Goehler: To guarantee the broker salary, you have…
Linda Weiss: It was this week, and at first they said they won’t do that and in the end they did…
Fred Dewey: So, how do feel as an artist who relates as this kinds of problems? What is your role as an artist and what do you think the artistic object can do?
Linda Weiss: I think, I’m sort of analyzing that and using that and of course I’d like to make visible that points where the system fails or what are the failures, shadow banking system for example because I then read a book from Paul Krugman who forecasted that crisis ten years ago for example, was quite interesting and to have this Alan Greenspan view and he also talked about Ayn Rand, you know...
Fred Dewey: But in terms of, I mean, I guess what I’m saying is, in terms of your art, because we can’t figure out the whole economic situation that you as an artist are trying to intervene … in some way and you are trying to mark it, you are trying to mark and signify it, images or
Linda Weiss: I try to make things visible, I try to understand how that mess, what is the origin of that mess and what are the failure points, I try to understand and then I try to make that visible and the audience can make their opinion for themselves, so, sort of, I try to understand first...