THE GIFT OF PEER(S)
A Prayer Piece for the Survival of Art and Artists
in the Face of Culture under Constant Threat
of Disintegrating into MereCommodities
On the premise that money re-codes everything,
we pray that artists remain:
Artist most steadfast
(Response: For them we pray)
Artist most generous
Artist most faithful to his or her muse
Artist most honourable
Artist most subversive
Artist most critical
Artist most mystical
Artist most pure
Artist most free
Artist most humble
Artist most courageous
Artist most resistant to instrumental forces
Artist most expressive
Artist of ideas and ideals
Artist on the side of justice
Artist for peace
Artist most open to the discourse of Others
Maker of beauty
Cause of our joy
Vessel of the authentic
Singular vessel of artistic energies
Model of all who labor in creativity
Keeper of the visionary life
Hope of the non-seeing
Refuge from the mediocre
Comfort of the new
Prophet of transformations and transfigurations
Critic of master narratives
Embodiment of human agency
Health of all contemporary cultures
Let us pray
O Divine Universe which in thy unfathomable providence
was pleased to choose artists as vessels of creativity and generosity,
grant that they may deserve to have the spirit of wisdom and
to transcend and to remain un-coopted by the powers of commerce.
O Divine Universe, visit this site of gathering, of gifting and sharing
and drive from it all the snares of the enemy.
Let thy holy energies dwell herein,
to preserve us all as a community
that continues to work for the health of all cultures.
And may thy blessing be upon us forever through the Tao of one and all.
We offer you our deepest gratitude, and we ask all these in your name,
Victor Burgin. The End of Art Theory. London: Macmillan Education Ltd., 1987.
Douglas Crimp. On the Museum’s Ruins. London: MIT Press, 1993.
Arthur J. Scanlan. The Small Roman Missal. Belgium: Henri Proost and Co., 1961.
Arthur Danto. The Transfiguration of the Commonplace. Boston: Harvard University Press, 1981.
Milton Glaser. “I Listen to the Market” in On Signs, ed. Marshall Blonsky. Oxford: Basil Blackwell Ltd., 1985.
Caroll Michells. How to Survive as an Artist: Selling yourself without Selling your Soul. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1992.
Art in Theory 1900-1990. Eds., Charles Harrison and Paul Wood. Cambridge: Blackwell Publishers, 1993.
The Gift of Peer(s) was performed at PEER Gallery Space in London March 25, 2007 as the closing ritual of the performance of the Museum of Mental Objects which is: A museum of propositions; A museum of memories; A museum of glimmers ; An entropic museum ; A museum of no visible objects.
The Museum of Mental Objects (MoMO) is a performance art museum that proposes that the artist's body be a museum. As its curatorial procedure, MoMO invites artists to whisper artworks to the museum. These works will never be represented or documented in any other shape or form. These works will be kept as mere memories by the museum. The museum can be invited to recite the names of the artists and their artworks. During such a performance/exhibition, there will be no audio or video recordings made, no photographs taken. The audience will be requested to do the same. These works must remain as memories for anyone who hears the works recited/exhibited/performed.
Established as a response to "the constant threat of culture disintegrating into mere commodities" (Walter Benjamin), MoMO exhibits/collects no visible objects to be commodified.
Judy Freya Sibayan and Matt Price conceived and are the Museum of Mental Objects. During this performance at PEER, artists Gavin Turk, Susan Treister, Alinah Azadeh, David Medalla, Richard Grayson, Erika Tan, Sara Haq, Brian Catling, Hayley Newman, and Rajni Shah gifted/installed works in MoMO.