Saturday, 2 March 2013

I’m having some suspicion about being a ‘fan’ of anything.

I have big fascinations with some certain artist, that artist’s work resonates with me, perhaps the work will continue to resonate with me, but…

When I come back to the work, is it nostalgia that drives me back, a desire for that feeling I had when I first connected vigorously to the work? That feeling that is now lost? Nostalgia is a longing for something lost. It is a kind of suffering. I don’t want to live while longing for something I cannot have.

If I am coming back to the work because “I am a fan of this”, then that’s just a re-inforcement of identity, is it necessary? Do I cease to exist if I don’t remind myself that I am a fan of this?

Do I need to identify myself as a fan of anything?


  1. @vuzhmusic Curiously, english meaning for “fan” interacts with french Deleuze´s idea of “vibration” & around

    TrackBack by _lapsus | March 2, 2013 8:38 pm
  2. I do find myself a fan in the sense of having some folks that I like to hear
    as they evolve over the years. The kind of fandom, though, that pedestalizes artists or
    elevates them to another place, troubles me.

    Posted by gurdonark | March 2, 2013 9:43 pm
  3. Gurdonark, you raise an extremely good point about following the progress and journey of an artist, this is a very good reason to come back to any artist, and even to go back to old works to re-acquaint oneself for a better understanding of what changes the artist has gone through.

    Posted by C. Reider | March 2, 2013 10:55 pm
  4. Personally, it’s not just about being a fan of the artist’s work (and by artist I mean musician in this limited sense. This discussions could easily be expanded to all artistic mediums) and whether or not they are worth revisiting, let alone follow, but also remembering the path by which the artist has undertaken that journey. I find it extremely interesting and inspirational to revisit the labels (or promoters) of a specific artist to see how time has impacted their interpretation of their journey, the artist(s) that symbolized that moment of the journey and how that artist may, or may not, now represent that journey.

    Posted by John Ryan | March 3, 2013 1:10 am
  5. You and I both spend a lot of time promoting the work of other people. Why would we do this other than being a “fan”? I think the word fan might carry around a lot of baggage due to the way it is used in popular media but the sentiment remains. We really appreciate the work to the point that we start trying to spread it to others. That’s what being a fan represents to me.

    Posted by Schemawound | March 3, 2013 11:13 am
  6. Schemawound, good thoughts. I’m not yet sure what the implications are for using the word “fan” in the context you bring up. I’m considering some troubling aspects of identifying oneself based on taste, and not at all discounting the idea of liking things or even liking them over a long period. My main point, I guess, is that appreciating something is an event with a beginning and ending – not a permanent touchstone to who one is.

    Posted by C. Reider | March 3, 2013 11:23 am
  7. I find the term “fan” problematic as well, especially when you consider its origin (a contraction of “fanatic”). And “follower” also bothers me, because a follower is implicitly linked to a leader. I’d live to find a better term that expresses my sincere interest in a person’s ongoing work, whether or not I consider myself a peer of that person. But in the meantime, both terms are useful in the absence of something better.

    Posted by Dave Seidel | March 3, 2013 11:23 am
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