Explore vs Exploit 

One of the lessons this week that had impact was the notion that underlined a basic balance between two different roles that are at play in the studio. 

Explore: Play, explore, question , challenge yourself.

Exploit: Draw directly on the lessons learned from exploration to effectively disseminate ideas. 

Seems pretty obvious…

Explore: The engagement of curiosity and play in studio life. An artist’s willingness to explore reflects in a dynamic body of work that easily attracts new and returning eyes.
Exploit: The work that draws directly on the lessons learned from exploration to effectively disseminate ideas, shifting back and forth as nessassary to effectively feed and sustain a functioning studio.

Speckled buff stoneware base slipped with a Willie’s white slip, paper stenciled and redlined using a cobalt tinted Willie’s. Fired to cone 6 using a studio crackle and crawl glaze.

My hang-up is that I appear to prefer the chaos of “exploring”, all the challenges, the ups and downs, all the BS (I seriously suspect it’s a manifestation of a personality disorder. I need a certain amount of drama in my life to feel normal. Over the past few years I’ve  enjoyed removing a majority of it from my daily life, but it still shows up… TaDa!) Unfortunately, I don’t have the same problem with “exploiting “. I do my micro-batches of  8 to 20ish, figure out what works and what doesn’t, and then move on (aka. loose interest once the project is dialed in). It could be a side effect of working without any real goals aside from just making the work. I wish I had more interest in standing still long enough to effectively exploit what’s been explored, but I feel that I’m in a race to get ideas out of my system before I just can’t.

Making products just isn’t a priority at the moment.

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One thought on “Explore vs Exploit 

  1. Hey, I really like your website. I think it is very entertaining. You seem quite talented. What do you think about this site: Sculptor2000.com It has some super great art on it. My favorite person is this sculptor http://www.sculptor2000.com/artist-john-abery-with-the-sculpture-called-the-six-minute-man/ He has some wierd sculptures that is super strange. Seems he is from Australia. What do you think? Thanks very much for your feedback and thank you for the awesome posts that you write.

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