- The artist interview as a conservation tool for process-based art by Sjoerd Buisman
- Book title
- The artist interview: for conservation and presentation of contemporary art: guidelines and practice
- Pages (from-to)
- Heijningen: Jap Sam Books
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA)
The oeuvre interview conducted with Sjoerd Buisman in 1998 was followed up ten years later with a case interview about the ‘planting piece’ Dennenwal from the collection of the Kröller-Müller Museum. Living material such as trees, grasses and potatoes, which frequently recurs in the work of Buisman, is a challenging phenomenon in the practice of conservation. This article pays in-depth attention to the dilemmas with regard to the behaviour of this material and the preservation of the artwork. What is the essence of artworks that are constantly changing and eventually may die? Buisman’s answers offer new perspectives on his artwork, lending a substantive value to the interview, which will have to be examined critically with a view to the conservation practice. Both the interviews show that the artist provides varying interpretations depending on the changing manifestations of his work. In his eyes, every appearance is right. For the conservator, this creates a nearly impossible task because conservation and an unrestrained process seem to exclude each other. Even so, it would be desirable to guide the artwork’s development, because the degree to which this happens determines the artwork’s future appearances. The interviews show how the artist himself would care for the work and what advice he gives for the future. And that is when the conservator’s real work begins: this information will have to be valued and weighed against other options and interests.
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