Official Declaration of The Production-Year 2017–2018

This is strictly confidential. If you are having unclean thoughts or thinking of making important decisions based on emotions without thinking, then please seek appropriate counsel. Reading this is not going to help you in any way.


This year is a special year. It is this year that I have decided that the Declaration of the Production-Year become an official “institution” of the A.G.-Method. Let me explain.

First of all, for lack of a better term, for now at least I have begun calling my overall “methodology” the “A.G.-Method”. So be it. Now, for the last several years, the official “Declaration” of the Production-Year has been a yearly practice of mine. I have explained how it works and why it is the way it is in other documents.

For now, let’s just say that I think it very important every year for me to make such a Declaration, if only so that various “stakeholders” come to know what I am currently working on, as well as what is about to come out of my Atelier or “studio”, and for obvious reasons. In the Art Market, like in any market, predictable economics are always favorable to unpredictable economics. This Declaration process is all about that. I don’t want anyone to be “surprised” and so I make a Declaration every FALL of every year, and I give people something they can “chew on”. (The fact that it is in the Autumn/Fall of every year is more of an accident of birth than anything else, since I was born in the Fall).

Again, this year is a special year. Not only am I officially making these Declarations an “institution” of the A.G.-Method, but this year I am going to take the time to go into many more details than I am used to. This is the Declaration of the Production-Year 2017–2018. That means that the following are “forward-looking statements” all the way up to and including the year A.D. 2018, as far as my artistic production is concerned.

WARNING: If you are not prepared to take the time to read through this declaration, or to take the time to review or go over or otherwise engage in any way whatsoever with my work, then you are not a “stakeholder”. You should stop reading. This isn’t for you. If you do read it, even by accident, then there is another warning: THIS IS ALL AS LITERAL AND UNAMBIGUOUS AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE, or at least I have composed it to the best of my ability as unique author of the works I am about to speak of, as sole creator. (*See: DISCLAIMER at the end of this Declaration).

I. The Archives-Project:

We begin with The Archives-Project. Let’s rewind a little. In the Summer of 2001, I began an artistic project that came to be known as The History-Project. I had just moved into a new apartment and as I was unpacking my many boxes, I began making a series of new works of painting ON pieces of cardboard, from my emptied cardboard boxes. Here is an example of the first official “History-Painting” from that ongoing series, this one being an oil painting on Masonite board, made in the Summer of 2001.

First Official History-Painting circa A.G. © 2001.

The History-Project, as it was called, consisted of a series of paintings but also a series of texts as well as a series of musical compositions. That is to say, the work was of an interdisciplinary nature, it was an expression in three media, or across three “channels” as I like to call them: IMAGE / SOUND / TEXT.

Long story short, I worked on the History-Project for many years, then moved on to work on other projects, and several years ago I began working on the themes and concepts for a “sequel” if you will, to the History-Project. I chose to call it The Archives-Project.

As The History-Project, as originally conceived, consisted in part of a full-length novel, The Archives-Project too would feature a full-length novel. All of this to say that I have been working on that novel in earnest now for quite some time, and that is one of the things that I will be working on in the coming new Production-Year 2017–2018.

The reason I give the “etiology” if you will, of the Archives-Project is because I want to show you how my art practice works, how I always build on the work that I have already done. In the past, I have been harshly criticized as an artist, have been told that my work lacked “coherence” and “consistency”. The thing is, it’s actually quite the opposite. Everything I do builds on top of what I have done before, there is absolute coherence and consistency. In fact, it’s become part of my trademark.

My work sits on a solid foundation steeped in tradition and proven work methods. I can be counted on as an artist if I stick to the plan. While my individual pieces of art cannot be predicted in advance, often not even by myself, overall as an artist, as a professional independent contractor, my work is extremely predictable. And that’s part of the value I bring to the table. I’m not into politics, you won’t find me at a picket line or at a protest for any reason. I won’t surprise you with anything out-of-line, I won’t cross any ethical lines, but I will always produce world-class art productions. Safety in the workplace is always my first priority and security, management of risks, in the logistics of it all, is of chief concern to me.

While I speak of The Archives-Project as a novel, which it is, it is also more than that. Like every official “Project” even since before The History-Project, as said, every Project consists of themes, concepts, ideas, emotions, experiences, etc., EXPRESSED ACROSS THREE CHANNELS: IMAGE / SOUND / TEXT. There is another thing. I also engage in a great deal of research, and have done so for the better part of the last 20 years. Each new project is also always founded on a unique set of concepts, all based on oodles of independent research.

II. Here’s What To Expect:

  • I will be publishing all my statements, all of my art, and much of my research, in various places on-line. I have already listed these in my last Note, from June, 2016, called Introducing The Archive-Painting, which itself was a long-planned and long-put-back, important addition to last year’s Declaration of Production-Year 2016–2017;
  • Enter The Anti-Project: Believe it or not, though I have been working solely as a project-based, serial, interdisciplinary artist “across three channels of expression, Image/Sound/Text”, as I love to say, in this Production-Year I am going to go far beyond that. You won’t even believe it. I have been working on the next twenty years of so-called “Projects”, and one of the first things I need to do right off the bat in this new Production-Year is to “put a nail in the coffin” if you will of MY OWN METHOD!
  • Therefore, expect to see a slow-paced, subtle “disintegration” and “re-integration” process throughout my work in this new Production-Year, slowly “phasing-in” and “phasing-out”. I said there would be no surprises and I meant it, but I was referring to “unpleasant surprises”. There will be lots of goodies for those who love looking for them. But always remember the number one rule: Don’t try too hard to “read” anything into my work. That is why I do my due diligence for EVERY project, that is why I do so much research and publish it on-line in places easily accessible to anybody with an Internet connection. It is so that if you ever feel “lost” in my work, you can go directly to the source of my inspiration, to the documentation of all my methods, to every single concept that I am using, with references to every last work that were foundational for every last piece that I “publish” (by “publishing art work” I mean putting it in a place that is accessible by the “public”, that can be easily found by people not given directions or the exact location to find it, and not by accident, but by someone looking for this sort of thing). This Github Repository is a work-in-progress, but I am slowly putting all the “Documentation” fo my Experiments (a.k.a. Projects etc.) AND (Workflow) Methods there. See: DOCUMENTATION — Formal Documentation on Projects and Methods;
  • Two major themes this coming Production-Year, 2017–2018 will be MOVEMENT and INTEGRATION — Movement will be preceded by Immobility (Inhibition) and Integration by Differentiation (Cultivation/Refinement). Following on a lot of the work that I did in the recent past, I will be working on my Datatypes Project as well as other similar projects whose purpose is to study concepts, namely “Structures”, from mathematics and theoretical computer science, and use art, as well as programming, to ARTICULATE things ABOUT said structures, to a mostly lay audience. The idea is to take a concept, like the mathematical concept of “function” or else some given data type or data structure in computer science, and a) test it experimentally, empirically, through programming mostly in the Python language and b) to then extrapolate ON THE CONCEPTS AND THE CODE, to try to teach people the underlying technologies, concepts and “abstractions” of the advanced technology they use everyday and hopefully give them both a better understanding of, and a newfound and renewed passion for said THEORETICAL FOUNDATIONS; See: The Datatypes Project: Abstract Assembly;
  • This new Production-Year, 2017–2018, the truth about my longstanding “Beautiful Signals” concept is finally going to come out, be exposed. It has to do with research I was doing 15 years ago in what at the time I called “Anaesthetic Beauty”. In fact, this year I will be publishing more than I ever have, will be much more present on social media. This is the year that I officially launched my workspace, my art studio, called The Historiotheque (currently at version 2.0.1). The Historiotheque had existed for several years before that, but last April/May, I had to “Move The Archives” so to speak, to a new location. The process of “Moving The Archives” and of the rebirth of The Historiotheque — at the new location — was duly documented, and that is a good thing. That is a good thing because I lost a negligible amount of “business continuity”. That happens to be one of my secret sauces, and all of the methods used in my art practice are being released to the public, continuously in small chunks, much of it completely “Open Sourced” (while most of it is still All Rights Reserved but a large part is currently being licensed either under Artistic License 2.0 or else licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License);
  • This brings me onto what for now will be my final point. I will either return to this note, edit it and add content, or I will attach a link at the bottom to another note where I add further comments on all of this. I say this because I want to go over what I have been working on previous over the course of the last few years, but also over the course of my lifetime as artist. This will be in a separate document, at least in part, called “DÉMARCHE” (French term I use for my “artistic approach”). My approach has already been published may times, and I will publish it again, or publish a revised, updated, current working version (“release”). Everything is a release in my art practice, in the sense of a “software release”, of a “version”. You will learn to “read” and differentiate between the various versions , and you will become accustomed to my seasonal work-schedule. Once again, predictable economics in any art market is better than unpredictable economics, as far as stakeholders are concerned.

III. A First Taste of Things To Come:

Here is the first “official painting” in the series composing my new Production-Year, 2017–2018. The first painting that sets any given painting series in motion, and any given “Project” founded on series that do become distinct projects, is already of special importance. It is the “first” but really the “first” painting in a series is ALWAYS the fruit of many long years of hard work and hard reflections. This painting is the fruit of 20 years of very hard work. This is what you can expect to come out of my Atelier/Studio. But what does it mean? Essentially, it means nothing. If we go back to the etymological roots of the prefix “anti-”, we get Greek ἀντί , whose Latin cognate is “ante”, which in Latin stands for:

ANTE: 1. (of space) before, in front, forwards; 2. (of time) before, previously

Hence, I present to you a kind of “Paradoxical Painting”, which in truth is what I call “Concrete Realism”. I call it “Concrete” to oppose it conceptually, or contrast it to, a kind of “Realism” that I deem far too “Abstract”. That is to say, the work is minimalist, or seeks to be minimalistic, frugal. The painting stays within the boundaries of its frame. It is not literally a “window into the world”, into any given “world”, not even into my world as author or painter of the work. If it is taken as anything more than just “the application of pigment on a flat surface”, then one risks falling into a great deception. In this case, being cognizant of such “dark abysms” of thought, and after 20 years of daily practice in the craft of painting, I anticipated what would come “after” my painting, because I have full knowledge of what came before, as it is the fruit of what came before. It is paradoxical because of the interminable — read: non-sustainable, non-consoling — quest of what I once called “The Abstraction of Positionality”, itself a kind of “Paradox of Paradoxicality”, an infinite regress into said dark abysms of thought.

The thing is, there is no such thing on earth as a “Solar Vortex” that my painting could possibly be a representation of. In that sense, the work also tasks itself with exposing the artifice in art itself, as well as the dangers of trying to “read” a painting like this, which is by definition “illegible”. Trying to comprehend the incomprehensible, is impossible, if it is truly incomprehensible. Hence, series like this one, and others before, and after, are meant to also treat of the subject of Limit(s) in Painting.

My working hypothesis for the last 15 years, with the official start of “The History-Project” in the Summer of 2001, was precisely in-line with the above: I do not believe that one can “paint concepts”, at least not in the methods and traditions that I have inherited as professional painter in Quebec, Canada. That is to say, as I more or less “proved” in the Writing-Without-Writing Project that came directly AFTER The History-Project, trying to understand paintings in this way, especially when they are “abstract”, is dangerous, and not healthy for the mind. It is poor “Mental Hygiene”, if you will.

Therefore, to get the most out of a painting like this, and not entail too many risks, it is best to just take a quick look at it and move on. If you stare too much INTO THE SOLAR VORTEX, you risk going blind, to use an analogy with staring at the actual sun. There is no mysticism or magic in any of this. It is very concrete, down-to-earth, and can also be used as sound advice to any practicing painters, or anyone contemplating becoming a painter in the future. It comes with its own DISCLAIMER: Don’t try this at home, kids. And don’t get stuck in the “Solar Vortex”. It’s just a painting. But as “art”, in this case it is relevant to all times, now and forever, because such risks are always present in any given situation. But…

Be wary of the accumulation of too much relevance, for it too can become paradoxical. Find a sound, hygienic release and only stay within those frames.

May you have a good year. Be inspired but be safe and disciplined, and above all be careful. And may you have many joys to come, much health, and prosperity for you and your kin. I’ll be seeing you at next year’s official Declaration, of Production-Year, 2018–2019.

Composed by A.G. Tuesday, August 30th, 2016.

A.G. © 2016. All Rights Reserved.

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Amendment 1.0.0: September 22nd, 2016 @ 17h15 EST
It would appear that I have failed to make it explicit to everyone who has had contact with me lately that I am a professional painter, amongst other things. I have professional “status”, and as such, what I truly failed to communicate is that I am wholeheartedly behind UNESCO’s efforts towards the Protection and Promotion of The Diversity of Cultural Expressions.

More specifically, I am not only in complete solidarity with UNESCO’s Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (2005), I am also entirely in support of their efforts worldwide at raising awareness of the Convention, AND find recent developments on the Status of the Artist especially pertinent and quite favorable I might add.

I will continue to monitor the situation locally on any events citing the Convention or else any stakeholders making efforts towards implementation of the Recommendations on the Status of the Artist. Unfortunately, I find that things locally seem to be going in the opposite direction, at least for the moment. I have no real events of note that I find worthy of reportage. In the event that the binding international legal instrument is not being observed in any way, or referred to anywhere, I am forced to resort to exposing instances where non-stakeholders are working against at least Article 4, Paragraph 8 of the Convention, on “Interculturality”. I’m not an enforcer, just a an artist with professional status and so I am a stakeholder at the level of civil society, as an informed citizen, and in the private sector as a creative entrepreneur.

I have chosen Article 4, Paragraph 8 because it is of particular importance to me and very pertinent to me right now. My concrete action is to block people in my existing network who go against the grain of UNESCO’s efforts and support those that do. It is hard work and I would rather be doing something else, like working on my art. But naysayers that go against the efforts of UNESCO are not welcome in my networks online. I said that I was a “straight-shooter” and that I would be reliable over the next Production-Year, that there would be no funny business, and that my stakeholders could count on me to stick with the program. I wasn’t joking. [A.G.]

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Amendment 1.0.1: November 11th, 2016 @ 10h35 EST
Things are still running smoothly at my Atelier, The Historiotheque. Haven’t fallen asleep at the switch a single time. All is being recorded, documented, at least with regard to my artistic activities which I do in private in my own home. Lost no business continuity there whatsoever. Since last update. It’s an official update. The rest is unimportant to me. I succeeded in a tiny incremental improvement to the Atelier. I have tons of data to look over.. too much data actually, from such a small art-based Practise Research Research Operation. It’s actually exhilarating at least one microsecond every week or so. That’s when it tickles and I giggle like a little girl. The rest of the time I’m still mourning the loss of my mother from earlier in the year. But I lost no continuity, I solved every problem in an iterated manner, one at a time, and the problems are still small, and the discoveries great. But I’m not publishing any findings yet, because once I have tested what I’m trying to test, I have maybe 20, 30, or more years to try to find maybe a single answer to a single question, and yet I might work on building these theories my whole life and never even solve a single thing, only creating internal struggle and strife for myself. I certainly don’t want to risk anything, so I have officially shut down the Historiotheque, a few times since last update it’s been up and running and down again. It’s a modular workspace, remember? Right, so you’re not even following me, just trying to steal my ideas. A.G. © 2016.

What I was trying to say is that All is Good here, All Correct, as they used to say (spelled differently). I’m not here to spread confusion or spread discord. If you are, you’re the one they are looking for. So my final comment for today is the following: While everything is running smoothly at the Historiotheque AND in the Lifespace too, simultaneously, in the recording studio (SoundLabs) and in the Art Studio (Atelier),

- — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — -Amendment 1.0.2: December 21st, 2016 @ 18h27 EST
Possibly the most important thing to report to you at the moment is that against all odds, I have been able to ensure complete business continuity in the Art Operations at The Historiothèque. I seemingly keep doing the impossible. I will explain.

First of all, I keep finding myself in “impossible situations”. A simple example is that I keep innovating artistically, culturally, in extremely precarious situations, never losing any continuity whatsoever.

Also, I did many experiments since I first Officially Declared this new Production-Year, 2017–2018. These experiments have all been documented and prepared to be used by others following a genuinely scientific experimental methodology.

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Stakeholders will be happy. My ambient experimental design workflow management methodology is killing it. It is world-class professional stuff. Can’t wait to teach the kids. I have shut down the Historiotheque until further notice. I am taking a sabbatical, the sabbatical I should have taken the year my mother died, A.D. 2016, but couldn’t because I had to take care of too much business. I am still in the studio, in the lab, still documenting, perfecting techniques… but now I don’t need to work much. I am doing some jovial Instagramming. Ready for contracts, though, 2017, officially. Send any work my way. I reserve the right to refuse anything and everything. I will NOT accept Specifications unless a contract document already exists and is duly signed by all parties, notarized, whatever it takes. And it has to pass by my agent, which is not myself. I am NOT incorporating my art practice at least for the foreseeable future. Not enough stakeholders, no reason to. But I perfected the modular workspace, I have all the methods. They are open source, but proprietary. I wrote the book on running an Art Operations, I literally wrote a book about it, found on-line. It’s taking time to finalize things, but I am officially the independent contractor I always was, just version 2017.

I broke no promises. I lost no business continuity through insane events, against all odds. I lost no continuity through hospitalizations, just to give you an example, through moving the entire Archives and Studio to another location. I lost no business continuity through the sickness and death and burial of my own mother. That’s going on my tombstone. ALWAYS GREAT.

A.G. © 2017. All Rights Reserved.

[…] => This symbol means I will be adding new amendments. They will begin in 2017, January, and will start at official (release) semantic version 1.0.1. That’s for the amendments to the Official Declaration, which only has one version, every year, once a year, for present and future stakeholders.

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The contents of this “Declaration” and all that is contained within it is the original creative work of its unique, sole author. As author, I take responsibility for what I have “published”. I have tried as hard as I could to make it unambiguous, clear, specific, and only about work I have actually done — which can be easily verified — within the confines of my practice as professional painter, with official professional painter “status” in Quebec and Canada. I want to be held accountable for any “forward-looking statements” I have made concerning my new Production Year 2017–2018.

In fact, that is the main reason I am doing this, because I find too many artists are not held up to proper ethical standards, and are not held accountable for all the harm they do, all the trash they throw into the world. However, I cannot be held responsible for anything that results in someone copying my work, or using it to do harm to themselves or others. I have tried as best as I could to foresee as many potential risks as there could be from anyone reading this, but there is a limit to my influence over others. That is why at the top I provided a distinct WARNING so that only those who know what they are doing even bother reading it. Surely, others will copy me and perhaps do themselves and others, and even myself, a great disservice. But I have duly warned them about doing so. I have done my best to remain as independent as I could within my tradition.

Lastly, if I have inadvertently, unfairly copied the works of others before me, please contact me so I can remedy the situation immediately. The same goes if any of this is offensive or breaks any laws in the jurisdiction where I practice. I have read the user agreements of the web platforms / apps where I am publishing this, and give them the rights that I already gave them when I created these accounts.

This Declaration of Production-Year 2017–2018 was authored by A.G. © 2016. All Rights Reserved. Future amendments after this date of publication, the 3rd of September, 2016, at 22h00 (10PM EST), will be CLEARLY MARKED AS AMENDMENTS AND AS ACCESSIBLE AS THIS DECLARATION, PUBLISHED IN THE SAME WEB LOCATIONS. NONE OF THIS CAN BE USED WITHOUT MY DIRECT OFFICIAL APPROVAL. If you think that I am trying to be clever, then you are being foolish and you shouldn’t have been reading this in the first place, but working on being less foolish. I recommend no course of action whatsoever for others, no policy change, not even any avenues of thought one might want to entertain.

This is strictly confidential. If you are having unclean thoughts or thinking of making important decisions based on emotions without thinking, then please seek appropriate counsel. Reading this is not going to help you in any way.

Official Stamp of Approval. A.G. © 2016