COMMODITY is finished for submission to the UWA 3D Open Art Challenge for the January 2011 Round. The submitted work consists of the ghost-shell of the missing Pieces O' Miso©, a graph of the stock value and sales performance of the Seed Work, photos of the deconstructing of the Seed and a Cheap Digital Knockoff© of the Seed**
The response was gratifying and much more than I had hoped for; within 48 hours all Pieces O' Miso© were purchased. I would like to thank the Speculators/Co-Creators of this work:
Free Wee Ling
The Dove Rhode
Free Wee Ling
The Dove Rhode
Together we raised 2900L for the Artist's Prize Pool, had some laughs and engaged in a dialogue about selling, buying, marketing and appreciating art and the debate between philanthropic support and the importunities of marketing.
I would also like to thank Jayjay Zifanwe for his understanding and support of this work. Jayjay took a chance on allowing me to place the Pieces© on sale despite the rules of the UWA space stating that it not be used for commerce. Jayjay has claimed that he doesn't know much about art, but his understanding of the concept and meaning of this piece makes doubt the veracity of that statement :)
** Speculators, fear not: the Revelation textures were replaced by a generic one reading CHEAPDIGITALKNOCKOFF (and other changes) so even if someone attempted to duplicate/copybot this replica, they wouldn't have a copy of the Seed Work or your own Revelation. Your Value Index remains high.
Some thoughts from this piece's performance:
- Wizzy raised the question on my blog about commercial activity in the UWA space. COMMODITY wondered whether "voting with your dollars" is a legitimate index of worth for a work. The actual "artwork" cannot be purchased, as it involves the use of blog posts (free) and the participation and interaction between the Speculators and myself (unavailable for purchase).
- The issue emerged of "being connected" as a crucial part of the ability to see or own artwork in that the initial awareness of the work and the availability of parts of it for purchase were dependent on being in the right place at the right time (the initial Group Notice), reading the right press (blogs mentioning the work) or knowing the right people (word-of-mouth sales).
- One Almost-Speculator confessed to me that she really wanted to participate but couldn't stand the thought of having a body part of mine hanging in her inventory. Isn't that sweet?!?! My attempt to make her feel better by telling her about the trophies hanging on my wall in my mansion in Oblivion did not work too well, despite my assurances that they were mostly Goblin, Heretic or UnNatural body parts and looked quite pretty :(
- Hilarious dialogue ensued when FreeWee suggested I sell my cat next. We speculated on whether I could have raised the initial Prices, kept the body parts separate (ears, toes, fingers, neck) for a greater profitability or that we might convince Bryn Oh to do the same thing, which would probably result in UWA being able to pay all of its SL bills for the next 5 years :D
- Some dark thoughts surfaced in a dialogue with Trill Zapatero on whether I should now take the joke farther and put another copy of the work out with the salable parts intact once more. This was a really interesting exploration, invoking the ghosts of market tactics (shifting the presentation from artwork to commodity), consumer bait-and-switch ("contract between consumer and provider is subject to change at any time") and the trust between artist and Speculators (we are participating/purchasing because we believe in the integrity of this unique work) being subject to betrayal (I saw the success of this work and couldn't pass up the big spacebux or: my agent made me do it).
- It was far too easy to do the parody of a stockholder's meeting. From having to type for attorneys for years, seeing Bill Gates or Steve Jobs do presentations and reading the notes of Linden Labs meetings or watching Philip Linden videos on You Tube, the words just fell onto the page. Sad, isn't it?
- I was happy when Ms Yiyuan wrote me to tell me she had purchased my Chest and later my Pelvis; it gave me great comfort to know these crucial parts of myself and most intimate inner yearnings were not on display in some bachelor's Love Den :D