Over the past two weeks I’ve been going through a major reorganization of my house, which consequently has become a complete restructuring of my studio space. I used to have three rooms in my house which were used as various forms of studio space: an office, a sculpture room, and an 2D room. The goal has been to merge all three of these rooms into one consolidated studio/storage room, so it’s easy to imagine what a logistical challenge this has become.
I’ve already thrown out a frightening amount of old artwork, and there’s still much more to be done. I know for some people it’s really hard to throw out your old work, but I’ve adopted a new philosophy towards this process. The work has served it’s purpose: I made it, I learned from it, and now it’s time to move onto new pursuits. What I gained from the experience of making the work in terms of developing skills and concepts is far more valuable to me long term than the actual material object itself.
I find art supplies are much tougher to get rid of. Since I work in so many different media, it’s difficult for me to imagine that I won’t need a specific supply again at another point in time. This has been proven many times over: when I was a sophomore at RISD, I took a woodcarving class and had to purchase an expensive wooden mallet. After the class ended, I didn’t touch that mallet once and I remember at the time resenting the fact that I had purchased an expensive tool that was used so briefly. When I started work on my graduate degree nine years later at the New York Academy of Art, I used that same wooden mallet nearly every day for the entire duration of my degree.