'That was a revelation'
August 19, 2011

In an hour-long interview, arts journalist Eleanor Wachtel talks with American artist John Baldessari about his philosophy and artistic processes in this feature for the CBC Radio program Ideas. During the course of the interview, Wachtel asks the artist about his “visit” to the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1971, an encounter which led to the famous lithograph, “I will not make any more boring art.”

“They were inviting artists to come and do projects and they invited me,” explains Baldessari. “Of course they had no money--no budget--so you had to kind of mail it in.

“ I had just done a video piece where I was writing (I will not make any more boring art) over and over … I said, you know, just invite students to come into an empty gallery and if they feel similarly afflicted and guilty to write it as many times on the wall as they would wish.

“(The wall) was literally covered; I guess a lot of students felt bad about possibly being guilty of doing boring art. Yeah, that was a revelation.”

READ background on the interview: Wachtel On the Arts.

HEARthe full interview (audio player)

John Baldessari. From the  Lithography Workshop, NSCAD University Permanent Art Collection.