A Makers Attempted Manifesto (AM AM)
1. INVENTION BEFORE LEARNING
Advocate for an invented technical proficiency over a learned one. We all have innate creative potential. When it comes to making art, invent your own solution before learning the “right” way to do it.
2. EVERY SCULPTURE IS INFINITE
Be aware of varying degrees of resolution. At any point in the making of a sculpture you could have stopped and called it finished. Don’t let the sculpture in your mind get in the way of the one in your hands.
3. WHAT DON’T ARTISTS...
What don’t artists make sculptures out of? Use that.
Casting, woodworking, and welding are helpful processes to illustrate certain building techniques, but there is nothing that makes them essential to three-dimensional artmaking. Nor mold making or carving or figurative sculpting. Or a drill press or table saw or MIG welder. Neither is stone or wood or steel, and neither plaster or clay or cardboard. Not a hammer or chisel or clamp, and not a nail or screw or glue stick...
5. SPACE BEFORE TOOLS
Sculpture requires space. When having to choose between a new piece of equipment or the space it will occupy, choose the space. It’s cheaper and it reaps a higher rate of return in the end.
6. EVERY SCULPTURE IS MEANINGFUL
There is no such thing as art without content. Every choice you make has meaning. Learn to recognize––and at best harness––associations at work with every material, process, and display strategy you use.
7. FREE FROM BEING USED
Unlike every other object in the world, sculpture’s greatest benefit is its lack of obligation to be utilitarian. What is terrible for a bridge builder, electrical engineer, or computer scientist could be great for an artist.
8. WHAT CAN’T CONTRACTORS...
What can’t contractors, fabricators, manufacturers, or product designers make? Make that.
Limited means encourage creative solutions. In an age of cuts backs, conservation, and dwindling resources, learn to not only live with less but to benefit from less.
10. ALL POSSIBILITIES SCULPTURAL
It is helpful to periodically remind yourself that any one of us is incapable of even conceiving of all possibilities sculptural, let alone making them.