I Can’t be Famous Enough (2010)

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A programme note:

You’re probably reading this because you’ve momentarily deluded yourself once again into thinking you want some kind of aesthetic edification, but the mere sight of haggard lexical constellations such as ‘destabilise’, ‘juxtaposition’ and ‘performance space’ make your eyes roll over in almost visceral agony and your stomach rumble as you realise how profoundly bored you’ve become with art, yet alone the drivel written about it. You’d really rather head straight to the ludicrously overpriced bar in the foyer right now wouldn’t you? But you know that this set is probably going to run for at least a further thirty to thirty-five minutes excluding changeovers, that you’re not assertive enough to suggest to your partner that you leave now, and that frankly you’ve got no idea what’s going on and that neither does anyone else, on either side of the undead fourth wall just a few metres in front of your sense of impending despair.

You’re probably only here anyway out of some kind of repressed spite – because you too once tried to follow the ill-advised dream of expressing some tenuous aspect of your imagination and you wholeheartedly yet unspectacularly FAILED – that you now work as a pen pusher or civic bollard arrangement consultant or even in some ‘creative’ field like lifestyle consultancy or hawking iniquitously priced cartons of fairtrade mung bean cassoulet to weekending media plebs on freezing winter mornings in a pisshole suburb of London that everyone inexplicably wants to live in from cups made of 3,000 percent certified organic postindustrial waste and everything evil that’s now been made good for ever and ever – but that you tell yourself your choice is ok because you have mouths to feed (as if that wasn’t an attempt to extend into perpetuity what is at bottom only your monstrous flailing ego) or that, hell, you simply deserve some of the good things in life – like you’re just worth it anyway, based on no logic apart from the fact that it’s you who’s knocking back flagons of Châteauneuf-duPape and tempura battered fifty pound notes rather than the next guy. In fact you probably just came out here tonight to shoot down whatever act was on and claim one of those eternally hollow victories for yourself.

You may laugh, and I hope you do, because it will show these words to be true. And crucially if you’re not laughing it’s for the same reason. If we can raise ourselves up to be truly moral we must be honest with and admit that we’d all rather be watching Strictly or Snog Marry Avoid than attending turgid and wilfully obfuscatory events such as this (whatever one this note ends up being published for.)

As for me, I’m not as successful as the others in the group, but if I can use what little reputation they’ve already achieved (admittedly not much) then I can piggyback off them, passing off their ideas as my own in turn in the name of ‘the collective’ and ‘dynamic transference within the informational nexus’ or whatnot and generally bolstering my career which has been stalling for too long. My dream, which I see as the emergent rose from the proverbial hillock of dung, is to control more and more people through art, each cog in the chain performing as useless and ultimately humiliating a function as possible.