Purple Magazine
— S/S 2016 issue 25

Josh Kline

when the boundaries between art and life dissolve

Ready to Wear, 2012, Six 3-D printed sculptures in plaster Ready to Wear, 2012,<br />Six 3-D printed sculptures in plaster

artists series by MAURIZIO CATTELAN
in participation with MARTA PAPINI
photography by JOERG LOHSE
courtesy of the artist and 47 Canal, New York

 

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — How old were you in 2008?

JOSH KLINE — Twenty-eight, and then 29.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Where will you be in 2050?

JOSH KLINE — A climate-change refugee camp upstate? Mars? Manila? My family doesn’t have the best longevity genes…

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — If Land Art was sculpture in the expanded field, what is your art today?

JOSH KLINE — Sampling means that everything is up for grabs as potential art material. Bacteria, food, pharmaceuticals, politicians, hygiene products, lifestyle liquids, lights, music, current events, trends, etc. A visceral language made of desire, fear, and jokes. Feelings. I’m interested in the kind of expanded field that includes audiences without expensive degrees in art or art history.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — How much is your work related to newspaper headlines?

JOSH KLINE — Intimately.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — If we recorded your Skype calls, what would we hear and see?

JOSH KLINE — Boring office work.

Po-Po, 2015, detail OF THE Installation at 2015 Triennial: “Surround Audience,” New Museum, New York Po-Po, 2015,<br />detail OF THE Installation at 2015 Triennial:<br />“Surround Audience,” New Museum, New York

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Is there something that you are not free to say? What is your definition of freedom?

JOSH KLINE — We all have to be on our best behavior in public, since every conversation is basically a job interview now. It’s a kind of smiley, get-along-gang form of group self-censorship. This is what happens when the personal becomes the professional. When the boundaries between art and life dissolve.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — How much data do you generate per day?

JOSH KLINE — No idea.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Are data and metadata good for us?

JOSH KLINE — No idea.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Are we becoming metaphors of ourselves?

JOSH KLINE — I think we’re becoming brands. Good-bye secure, lifetime employment and pensions, hello self-trafficking on LinkedIn. As video recording for social media becomes constant and all-pervasive, expect everyone to start behaving like celebrities. Calculated and cultivated public versions of the self.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — What do you think the Internet would look like from inside?

JOSH KLINE — Boring code.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Are you more interested in interstellar or Internet space?

JOSH KLINE — I think people are going to look back on the Internet in 20 to 30 years the way people today remember early radio. It’s a blip. I’m interested in how it warps labor practices and neutralizes political movements. But, in general, I could give a shit about the aesthetics of networks. I don’t like Internet art. I don’t think web pages and email enhance the human condition.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Is the future a construction / illusion we’ve inherited from the ’60s?

JOSH KLINE — The ’60s gave us a lot of amazing art, but they also gave us the neoliberal lifestyle economy. People started defining themselves through the products and services they consumed. The baby boomers thought their future would be moon bases and rocket ships, but instead they built Whole Foods. If we’re going to solve the catastrophic problems ahead of us, we need to be able to imagine futures that don’t have anything to do with the ’60s and the baby boomers.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Is there something you believe in?

Broken Windows, 2015, 9 cast sculptures Broken Windows, 2015, 9 cast sculptures

JOSH KLINE — New York has infected me with a particularly nasty strain of workaholism, but deep down
I believe in laziness and not working — the inherent dignity of human beings outside of labor.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Making art is, to you, a way of getting rid of objects? Or is it a way of collecting them?

JOSH KLINE — Neither.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Is art, for you, a crystal ball or a time machine?

JOSH KLINE — Both.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — If you invented an app, what would it do?

JOSH KLINE — It would tell me when my friends are bored and want to talk on the phone. The best conversations happen on the phone.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — How can we hide from machines?

JOSH KLINE — No idea.

ThinkStrong, 2013, detail ThinkStrong, 2013, detail

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Are you born an artist? Will you die an artist?

JOSH KLINE — Maybe? I don’t think there’s something inherently profound about sticking with something for 60 years. How does Richard Serra wake up every morning and keep making the same thing over and over again? Does he ever think about pursuing some of his other ideas from a half-century ago, back before he gave up the ghost? Not every artist has it in them to be Mike Kelley or Isa Genzken, and that’s okay. If you realize that you’re out of ideas,
I think it’s fine to walk away from it. Very few artists keep it surprising across the decades.

MAURIZIO CATTELAN — Isn’t any resistance futile?

JOSH KLINE — I sincerely hope not!

[Table of contents]

S/S 2016 issue 25

Table of contents

purple EDITO

purple NEWS

purple BEST of the SEASON

purple INTERVIEW

purple FASHION WOMEN

purple FASHION MEN

purple DOCUMENT

purple BEAUTY

purple LOVE

purple PHILOSOPHY

purple SEX

purple NIGHT

purple STORY

purple VISUAL ESSAY

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