Monday, May 28, 2012

Laurie Anderson - First (& Last) NASA Artist-in-Residence

Laurie Anderson - Photo Credit: Ivan Prokop - found here

I always admired Laurie Anderson for her performance art, but I had no idea she was also a hands-on visual artist. If you're currently in the New York City area, however, you have until June 23 to catch her most recent exhibit - Boat - at Vito Schnabel gallery, 126 Leroy St.

Anderson is not only one of the most innovative artists to arrive on the scene in the past 3 decades, but also the most astoundingly prolific. But, NASA artist-in-residence? Too cool! Her stint at NASA was not a lasting one - apparently for lack of funding - but she describes this experience, and her life as an artist in general in the video clip below - a commencement address she gave this year at the School of Visual Arts' (SVA) graduation ceremony, held at New York City's Radio City Musical Hall, May 10, 2012.

The video is lengthy but well worth the listen. She is a remarkably inspiring woman who not only describes her own quirky, fearless approach to art, but an artist's approach to living and designing a guilt-free, uninhibited, contemplative artist's life. She proposes a few interesting concepts as well... for example, artist-in-residence positions opening up across the board: in congress, the White House, and the Department of Defense!

(Special thanks to Cory Doctorow at Boing Boing, for this recent post.)

Below is a YouTube clip of Laurie Anderson in action, featuring "Language is a Virus", from "Home of the Brave" 1984, and inspired by William Burroughs' "Language is a Virus from Outer Space".

Laurie Anderson's website can be found here.


  1. I enjoy these small spots about artists you deem worthy of showcasing. I have not been very aware of Anderson's abilities other than her performance art...this certainly expands my knowledge.

    Thank you!

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it, Bob - thanks for the feedback!

      I guess I'm most inspired by Anderson's courage and sheer energy... she really puts herself out there, taking tremendous risks... and she succeeds!