As the astute may have already guessed, I am, in fact, not Twelverton O’Shankley from Seven Hills, Australia. You got me! In actuality I’m Jeff, a first-year Masters Degree student in Art History at the University of Texas at Austin. I am chiefly interested in modern and contemporary art, and I wrote my undergraduate senior essay (at Wesleyan University in Connecticut) on Barnett Newman’s Stations of the Cross series.
Despite what the existence of this text and blog may initially imply, I am ambivalent (leaning towards negative) about blogs and blogging. My strong preference for vetted and formal publication over informal self-publication might be considered an elitist fly in my otherwise liberal and freedom-loving ointment. Cyberspace seems busy enough without everyone with a computer and a modem (myself included… myself especially) adding their own opinions or content at will. The generally low quality of the blogs that I have come across has only bolstered this opinion. I have recently discovered that the front page of wordpress.com is kindly furnished with “Freshly Pressed” examples of lousy blogging everyday. I do find better blogs occasionally, but they are rarely superior to mainstream content, at least for my purposes.
This first post thus seems to be the proper space for the glaring disclaimer which must accompany Twelve Os: I have been asked to write this blog for an art history course at UT Austin titled Visual Culture in Cyberspace and taught by Professor Moyo Okediji. Were it not for this course, I would not be writing a blog (and if I did somehow come to write a blog under other circumstances, it would almost certainly be somewhat different). Now that this situation has been disclosed I will attempt not to harp on it, and to make the best of my new Internet presence.
At this point I am quite unsure of what the actual content or direction of Twelve Os will be. My interests in art may come up at times, I may examine my experiences with “cyber” technology such as the internet and video games, I may discuss ideas related to Professor Okediji’s course, or I may pursue subjects which are presently unforeseen. But, at the least, I will remember that the internet is not something that you just dump something on, and that if I am going to clog the series of tubes any further, I might as well clog it with something that I put some effort into.