Buy NAthan Sharratt: Docent Information
Congratulations! Your decision to be a docent for Nathan Sharratt's institutional retrospective was a smart one. Being a docent for famed artist Nathan Sharratt is an artwork in and of itself; a collaboration that gives YOU a voice!
There's a few things to go over before your first tour.
Note: MAKE SURE YOU CHECK BACK HERE BEFORE YOUR FIRST SHIFT IN CASE THERE ARE ANY UPDATES OR CHANGES.
Not yet a docent for Nathan Sharratt? It's not too late!
Buy Nathan Sharratt is being held in the Welch School Galleries of Georgia State University. There are 2 galleries in the lobby next to the elevators, with 3 MFA shows concurrently on view. Derek Faust is in the small one, and Tori Tinsley is in the front of the large gallery. You have to walk through Tori's show to see Nathan's in the Rear of the Large Gallery.
Click the image below for a link to the Google Maps.
IF POSSIBLE, PLEASE ARRIVE AT LEAST 20 MINUTES EARLY BEFORE YOUR FIRST SHIFT FOR ORIENTATION.
Welch School Galleries hours: M-F, 10am until 6pm.
Reception: Thursday March 24, 5-8pm
10 Peachtree Center Avenue, Atlanta, GA 30303.
404.413.5230. Cynthia Farnell, Gallery Director
Pay parking in GSU T-Deck and metered parking on Gilmer Street. Within walking distance of 5 Points and Georgia State MARTA stations.
You can substitute bright blue and pink for Cyan and Magenta. The brighter the better. If you own no clothing with any of these colors, there will be a men's black dress shirt available for you to wear at the gallery.
You will also be given an Authentic Original Nathan Sharratt Commemorative Nametag, which is yours to keep!
The first 18 docents to sign up will receive Authentic Original Official Artwork of Nathan Sharratt Commemorative Nametag which you can keep or sell in the secondary market. Insane!
Finally! You're ready to begin informing the world about the very important work Nathan Sharratt is doing in his glorious artistic practice. Here's the breakdown:
0) Download the Aurasma App on iPhone or Android, if you have can. Follow the artist on Social Media. (See the Social Media Section below this one). Give the artist your Twitter and Instagram handle, if you have one, or your phone number for texts.
1) Arrive early to mentally and physically prepare. You will be wearing a small microphone for the live stream and a name tag.
2) Listen to the Artist as he walks you through the exhibition (skip this step after your first tour if you signed up for multiple tours).
3) Ask the Artist any questions you may have.
4) Patiently wait for people to show up while appearing stately and knowledgeable. Make sure they wait at least a little bit. They expect that sort of thing and will pay attention that much more closely to what you have to say.
4a) Pick a path. Screen based or imagination-based. If applicable, inform people of the Augmented Reality experience (see above) EITHER BEFORE OR AFTER THE TOUR ENDS BASED ON YOUR CHOICE and suggest they download the free app to fully immerse themselves in the Art Experience.
4b) Encourage people to follow the artist on Social Media to interact with him during or after the tour. Let them know the Artist may be too busy to respond. Twitter/Instagram @alienate #buynathansharratt
4c) BASED ON YOUR SCREEN VS IMAGINATION CHOICE, EITHER BEFORE OR AFTER THE TOUR Encourage people to take pictures, selfies, and video, or to even watch the tour through their phone screens. Make sure to reiterate the @alienate and #buynathansharratt
5) Give the people a tour of the exhibition.
6) Thank them for their time and suggest they purchase a Commemorative Item from our Curated Retail Experience Obiekt (that's "object" in Polish).
7) Offer to sign them up for our mailing list. This will be via an iPad app near the Artist. You may ask the artist to borrow the iPad to sign people up.
You are giving a tour of Null Object, the exhibit-within-the-exhibit. The gallery is a mini-museum that is very important and state-owned.
Null Object is a retrospective of Famed Artist Nathan Sharratt's illustrious career.
Null Object is curated by Arthur Fantastic, a pseudonym for a famous curator, critical theorist, and pop star. There will be a curator's essay. Arthur Fantastic may be a robot.
There is no actual "Art", there is only wall text.
You may read the wall text out loud, if it would be helpful.
There is currently a plan to create an Augmented Reality experience for the exhibit using the free iPhone app Aurasma. People may hold their phones up to a wall text tile to see an Augmented Reality overlay on their screen. We've had some technical issues so this may or may not happen. The Artist will inform you before your first shift.
Your performance will be documented. Assuming there are no Internet connection problems in the gallery, there will be a camera in the gallery live-streaming the tour. The live stream has a chat function which the Artist will be monitoring. The Artist may relay questions to you from people watching the stream.
The Artist will be performing in the Project Space, N'objet (that's "no object" in French). He will usually be making crafts and other objects for the shop, but he may do other things like remix songs or post on Facebook.
The Artist may interrupt your tour. If the artist is wearing his black Legitimate Artist smock outside the project space, he is performing. Go with it.
The Artist may message you during your tour with comments, suggestions, or questions. Keep your phone handy.
You are performing while giving the tour. You may give a traditional museum-style docent tour, or you may use the artworks as jumping off points for other discussion.
You are performing as Yourself, giving a serious tour to interested art lovers. "Yourself" may be interpreted somewhat loosely, as in, you might be an extreme version of Yourself, or a sideways version of Yourself, or Yourself Yourself. If you are already a performance artist, Yourself may be related to your practice, but you may not perform as a completely foreign character.
You may interpret the artwork however you feel is appropriate. You may discuss the work as you see it, as the Artist has interpreted for you, or you may use it as a pivot point.
If you choose to digress, you must go through the motions as if you were still talking about the work on display. Eg. "And here this next work is simply beautiful [gesture to the next artwork], look at how it perpetuates the corporate hegemony." Etc.
You may ask the audience questions about the work. Try to get them to engage in dialog. Research docent tour videos if you wish, to see what kind of language they use, how they discuss work, and how they interact with the audience.
Appropriating Institutional Language is encouraged.
If you choose to talk about the Artist, discuss the Artist as if he were a non-living artwork.
You may engage the Artist to ask questions but only through Social Media, preferably Twitter (@alienate). Be prepared that the Artist is performing whenever he is within the boundaries of the Project Space. The Artist may ignore you, or respond in an unexpected way, or he may simply answer your question. If the Artist speaks to you directly, you may respond in kind.
The Artist is also the Cashier.
The Artist will always respond to customers who wish to purchase something from the shop. They are the most important.
It is recommended that you treat anything the Artist says while performing as Very Important and Truthful and respond in a serious manner as is befitting the Artist's performed status as World-Renowned.
It's okay if you forget stuff. When in doubt, go with your gut. It's art, after all.
I will answer questions here as I receive them.
Q: What are some questions I could ask the audience?
A: The most important question to ask is "why?" Why is this thing the way it is? Why do you think the Artist chose to do XYZ? Think of the Socratic method. Give strong declarative statements and then ask the audience to unpack those statements. Or don't. Contradictions are okay. The world is a series of ridiculous contradictions, confusions, and inequalities, and that's what we're reflecting.
* Try to engage them in dialog about the themes being presented in the exhibition, or issues you find important related to the exhibition, such as commercialism, institutionalism, repressive desublimation, Donald Trump, labor, artist-as-brand vs artist-as-person, news as entertainment,, corporate sponsorship, mass media, celebrity, etc. If the conversation gets derailed bring it back, for example, by moving on to the next artwork. You are their guide; guide them.
* You could also ask them practical questions, like, what does this (invisible) artwork look like in your mind (based on the wall text description)?
* How do you feel about XYZ? Why do you feel that way?
Q: How long should my tour be?
A: As long as you feel is necessary. At least 10 minutes or so.
Q: How often are the tours scheduled?
A: Right now docents are scheduled in hour-long blocks, with tours starting at the top of the hour. Due to the location, there may be hours where no one shows up, in which case you can check with the Artist to see if there's anything else you can do to help. Like make some origami cranes or go outside the gallery entrance like a carnival barker and try to lure people into the gallery with promises of enlightenment and wonder. Conversely, you may give several shorter tours throughout the hour to fewer people. It just depends on the traffic for that shift. It's okay to play it by ear.