The sun was supposed to rise 4.28 and showed up as red stripes between grey clouds already much earlier. The spot for sunrise is moving further and further towards North, coming closer to the edge of the image frame day by day. Perhaps it will be out of sight before the end May, for the camera, that is. In some sense it is already out of sight, since my camera cannot record the true colours, or let’s say the colours I can see. What I see as glowing dark red the camera registers as nearly white light. These are the white nights; it seems there is no darkness at all during the night.
The exceptionally warm weather and the repeated rain showers have turned all vegetation into summer mode suddenly. The birch leaves are big, the elder bushes are blooming and the bird cherries will begin any moment. Only the aspen on the shore and in my image are slow to react, but even their buds are finally showing signs of life. In Swedish there is a saying “between bird cherries and lilacs” to describe those few days in the beginning of summer when everything is fresh and blooming. Normally that would be in June, but this year everything is early, even by the sea, so they will be here soon.
I was proofreading a text on artistic research by Teemu Mäki, and he claims there are five main reasons for artists to combine art and research or to engage in artistic research, namely to make better art, to understand and enjoy art more, to explain art better, to understand more of the world through art and then change it with art, and to gain respect and better pay. He approves of the four first ones although the fourth is what he probably propagates. Yes, why not. If I would call this project artistic research, would my motives fit in one of those categories?
I am not doing this in order to make better art, am I? Or perhaps you could say that I try to make art in a slightly different way, and that difference could be towards the better, too. I am not doing this in order to understand and enjoy art more, unless you mean understanding this particular artistic process, and the same goes for the third category, to explain art better. I am not trying to explain art, except in the sence of trying to explain or record or comment this one process. And I am not doing this in order to get respect and better pay. Or perhaps I am in some way, since I gain some self-respect by completing my self-appointed task, and at least in theory I would not mind somebody buying the video work that this might turn into.
The category that I find easiest to sympathise with is the fourth one, to understand more of the world through art and then change it with art, although I would emphasize understanding rather than changing. I could say that I am recording some small details of the world in order to understand and enjoy it and by giving attention to some aspects of the world I hope to focus other people’s attention on them as well, and thus to influence their values, of course. This is nevertheless a very modest approach to change compared to strategies like satirical posters or social practice.