That smell? Oh, that’s just a few burning bridges.

May 18, 2008

So things kind of came to a head, instutionally, on the day (yesterday) I should’ve graduated.  What was probably a natural lapse in any info about the “ceremony”* made me a little nervous about a whole bunch of threats to sink an already-sinking ship, i.e., try to push me out and away from CalArts.  Which, whatever.  Not doing exactly what people tell me to do is how I always get into trouble anyway.

And so this Wednesdsay I just decided to politely inquire about whether or not I would, in fact, be graduating, because the faculty had stopped returning my emails and calls.  The answer to that was “hey!  Come to graduation!  Have some champagne!” 

Which is not a promising answer to a yes or no question.

So, with nothing to lose, I decided to keep pushing until I found out that, in fact, while I had been approved to Participate in the Ceremony, actually getting my MFA was a whole other matter that would be sorted out later.  This is when I started to panic, leading to a real shitstorm between me and the faculty and the school dean and the dean of students culminating in me letting them know that I would file a lawsuit unless they promised that the harassment would stop.  No such luck.  So, you know, I guess that whole CalArts thing was kind of a bad idea.  Though the faculty does have me all but convinced that I am a shitty artist and that I should stop making work.

So, the upshot of this is that there won’t be any posts for a while.  No work = no posts.  Also, because of those burning bridges, I lost all my Afghanistan funding and will have to just make the money myself, which, again: whatever, though I wish I had known that earlier.

*A ceremony is a meaningful ritual.  A bunch of rich people sitting around, getting totally drunk, and congratulating themselves on how wonderful they are is not a ceremony.




2 Responses to “That smell? Oh, that’s just a few burning bridges.”

  1. Will Says:

    What in Sam hell do they put in their pipes over there?
    I know things get more personal/emotional (“political”)
    in grad school, but this? Now?

    I’m compelled to repeat Nietzsche’s command: “flee into
    your solitude.” I have a habit of always opening to that page.
    In the long term, though, make sure you don’t confuse “liked by this group of people” with “good artist”.
    They are not the same. You are the latter, even if not the former.

    That said, threatening a lawsuit was a smart move, I think.
    Hearing legal cards hit the table is the only thing that gets them
    to move sometimes. It’d be a good idea to have a written timeline
    of your communications with them, and save any emails you can.
    Hopefully they’ll just come off whatever it is they’ve been smoking
    and graduate you already. Christ.

    You deserve far better than this. Just so you know you’re not
    the only one who knows that.

    Off the subject, have you been writing lately? There’s this technique in The Artist’s Way about just writing non-stop
    for 30 minutes, just pouring everything out, and then deleting/
    destroying it all. It’s never meant to be saved, so you just write
    all the deepest emotional stuff you have, never to be seen.
    I tried it once for 10 minutes. It was good. Good emotional flushing, and it sort of leaves you clearer after you take all the
    stuff you carry around with you and put it out there.
    It’s like you told it all to someone, but you didn’t, so it doesn’t affect anyone else. It might help.

    Take care of yourself, whatever you do.

  2. Dave Says:

    those people are a bunch of fuckers

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