Kristin Nason, John P. Murphy
Garry Winogrand
Guggenheim Fellowship Application

Ink on paper

K – Is it even appropriate to make anything anymore? I’m afraid the floating garbage patch is our era’s great collaborative work… it’s our pyramid.

J – Yes, it’s our collective achievement, larger than the pyramids, than the cathedrals.

K – I’ve heard there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050. What can artists do with that kind of information? Maybe just moving stuff around is enough.

J – Like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

K – Exactly. There are plenty of chairs.

J – So why make art? We both really responded to Garry Winogrand’s application for a Guggenheim Fellowship. He basically said he had no hope for the world — that was his conclusion. But that he made art because he could not fully accept his conclusion. That really resonates with me — the idea that art is a way to test or challenge our own fatalism.

K – Yeah, his statement articulated so well the hope and despair tied up in making things right now. It’s cold on the ship deck, but, the night sky…

Excerpts from a conversation, December 9, 2018

John P. Murphy is the Hoehn Curatorial Fellow of Prints at the University of San Diego.

Kristin Nason is a San Diego-based artist.