To call collecting an art form is a bit of farce. You’ve got to look a little deeper down the murky worm hole. Choosing the object of your neurosis however is very much an art (if such a moment is given the clear headed opportunity to bloom)*. Peter Fay is a wonderful example and having had the opportunity to work with him on his Bloodlines exhibition was a great honour. He was of course collecting horse pictures at the time but he also shared with us a private collection he was putting together of people’s lost pet posters**. He took a very ethical approach and would never leave a street bare, ensuring there were multiple copies before nabbing one. If there was only one, he’s take a photo of it. Nice man. He also commented on the socioeconomic aspects of lost pet posters. The picture, picture quality, no picture (i.e. only text), reward or lack thereof, funny, sad, black and white, full colour, gloss, A5, A4 A3, protective plastic sleeve, tape, staples and so on. But not unlike our very own Andy Muirhead the object of our desire will more often than not choose us and we are left at its disposal. I always thought he had a very creepy smile and all along when he was saying tea-cups and tea-pots he was thinking little boys bums.
Artistic collectors (not to be confused with professional collectors), are my favorite kind. I mention this because I used to think I was an artistic collector. I’m not. I border between professional and neurotic and most recently discovered I collect pet hates and fucked up neurotic collectors are up there on my list***. I’m also an amateur art collector, keyboard collector, list collector, vintage audio gear collector and can’t leave Bunnings without buying a pot which makes me a pot collector. When I left home at 17 or thereabouts my first apartment had a pretty small balcony and it wasn’t until my fourth or maybe even fifth rental property that I had a backyard. I’ve always loved plants so becoming a potting master was an obvious move. What amazed me to this day is how cheap terracotta and oven glazed pots are. I mean these little fuckers weigh a ton. They look heaps cool and some are huge but you can get a pot that will house your thyme bush well into its teens, give you all the thyme your heart could desire, and all you’ve parted with is $6.00. Man that’s good value.
* in which case it would no longer be a neurosis?
** I plan to steal this idea
*** But I like myself enough to get up every morning so go figure