The Bad at Sports podcast has been going strong for over six years and thus far has produced–wait a sec, are you f*%king kidding me?– 322 *weekly* podcast episodes??! With a new podcast released every week?! Each featuring an interview with a different artist or maker hailing from parts all across the Western Hemisphere? Uh, that’s pretty extraordinary. Over the last six-plus years of existence, Bad at Sports has talked to hundreds of artists, from local upstarts to living legends. Because B@S is constantly putting out new material, it’s easy to forget that they’ve built up a massive audio archive of material that is virtually unrivaled (William Furlong and his amazing Audio Arts casette tape magazines, of course, is the grandaddy precursor to Bad at Sports’ project). In honor of B@S’ sixth year of life on this planet, we’re going to start digging through the podcast archives on a weekly basis to highlight key episodes from the past. This, in addition to the new podcasts that the B@S team continues to create and upload for your listening pleasure each and every week.
So, please to enjoy the following selection from Bad at Sports archives, recorded in 2007 and featuring an interview with Jeff Wall that took place just prior to the opening of Wall’s retrospective exhibition at The Art Institute of Chicago.
“I was … looking at the exhibition and I realized, what I feel about many of my exhibitions…that no matter how well installed they are, no matter how well lit and if the rooms are great, and all that…a lot of the time my pictures just don’t look very good together. No matter how well you hang them they often just don’t really go together. It’s hard to make what I would call a really successful show as an event or as a circumstance, because they’re very singular, each one: and each one has its own structure, its own space, its own colors, its own light, or whatever. And they don’t go in groups. At least, they only go in groups more or less. I don’t see it as a virtue or a negative thing either, it must just be how I see, or how I do things. I really see my pictures as singular. I don’t have any interest in making variations on a theme, or any of those kinds of things that tie pictures together. Each one does come from a real experience. I used to think about it [in terms of] genre, but I don’t think about it like that anymore….Genre means something known. When you think you know something, you create limitations.” – Jeff Wall, interviewed by Duncan MacKenzie for Bad at Sports
This week on Centerfield, our twice-monthly column for Art:21 blog, we introduce a new regular segment: a special, (mostly) Chicago-centric podcast focusing on current issues and events in the contemporary art world called “Fielding Practice with Bad at Sports.” We’re really excited about bringing an audio dimension to our “Centerfield” column, since talking about art is, at heart, what Bad at Sports is all about. To this end, we’ve brought Chicago artist and arts writer Dan Gunn on board for our regular discussions, with Duncan MacKenzie leading our conversations and Richard Holland introducing each show and weaving a fantastic soundtrack into its contents.
This week, Dan, Duncan and I talk about the implications of Americans for the Arts’ newly issued National Art Index, an attempt to report on the health of the arts sector in a manner not unlike the Gross Domestic Product’s tracking of the Global National Economy. We also discuss Los Angeles’ desire to host a major art fair, perhaps under the auspices of Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. (MMPI), the group that runs the Armory Show and Art Chicago; and we consider two painting shows by Michelle Grabner (at Shane Campbell Gallery) and Pamela Fraser (at the Gahlberg Gallery, College of DuPage) that are currently on view. We end the segment with brief plugs for upcoming (or just-opened) Chicago exhibitions that we’re especially looking forward to seeing.
In future episodes we’ll feature guest panelists from the Chicago art community to keep things lively and add new angles to the conversations. So, click on over to art:21 blog and give it a listen…we hope you like it!
Those of you are brave and fond of the “dirty” words. You might as well check out “Why The Fuck Not Ppodcast?“ Think of it as a more plat-formists, music oriented and bizarre Bad At Sports from Europe.
Ppodcast has a more aggressively open ended mandate for the project and offers sound artists and experimental musicians a platform for their stuff.
Also, they introduced me to Lily Allen and I think I’m in love.