Saturday, January 28, 2012

Art and Conlanging

If you listened to the out-takes from the most recent Conlangery Podcast you heard an out-of-context quote from an experience I had in college. I went to a show of performance art pieces put on by art students. One of the episodes involved a man walking out on stage with a boom box, turning on some industrial music, stripping naked and proceeding to duct-tape sausage to himself.

From time to time, both on the show and off, Bianca and I have amused ourselves by imagining how various schools of art would map to styles of language invention. But now I think we've been going at this backwards. There is nothing intrinsically confusing about an earnest, naked gentleman with kielbasa affixed to his person. The problem is that no one in the audience knew what language he was speaking. If he had passed out a grammar and lexicon first, the audience would have some idea of what he was trying to say.

So, my current idea is that conceptual art is actually a form of conlanging. People just don't realize it yet.

Maybe I can get a paper in Social Text about this...

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