Consistency comes up a lot in your practice.
You have a seasonal uniform—you regularly
wear the same thing for extended periods of
time. You mention you like to eat the same
foods. You prefer to cook things that can be
eaten out of a bowl. What role does that play
in the bigger picture for you?
There’s the personal side and there is the
critical side. On the personal side I just feel
really comfortable with consistency or continuity. I like wearing the uniforms, and I like
having patterns for things like cooking or
work routines—as long as I get to make them
up myself. And sometimes I feel that I have
a harder timing ‘being’ than most people.
I look at other people and they seem to be
able to make dinner seamlessly, and for me
making a meal is always this ordeal, and
I always seem to get lost halfway through
it. When I know what I’m going to do, and
there is a routine and all the parts are there,
I feel so much happier. So, that’s the personal part.
And when I take that into the realm of an
art practice, I think my work deals with this
double-edged sword of freedom and liberation and restriction and security—how things
that make you feel free are often limiting. For
instance, on that level I’m liberating myself
from the dictates passed on to us by consumer
culture by being able to make a uniform that
I’m proud of and get to wear every day.
But it also eliminates decision making that
might sap energy you can focus elsewhere. I
don’t have to think about what I’m going to
wear or what I’m going to eat, but I’m going
to think about—
Absolutely. I have that conversation about
food with people all the time because so many
people I know love to cook, but I really like
to be in the studio making things. I think it is
the same creative energy, and I’d rather put
that energy into something that sticks around,
instead of something I’m just going to eat and
will then have to repeat the next day.
Interview with andrea zittel, apartamento