This weekend while on a Pollo Regio run (if you haven’t tried it, you are missing out), I had the opportunity to catch a little bit of a segment on Studio 360about a conceptual art piece that Tino Sehgal is doing at the Guggenheim Museum called “This Progress.”
The piece seems rather interesting, but what struck me is that the whole “conversation” starts off with a child asking the “observer” about their definition of progress.
Progress seems to be one of those ubiquitous terms that we never have a firm grasp on. Is progress a “doing,” or is it a “done?” To screw with your brain a bit more, is there a single point in time that can be considered progress in a present tense, or is it always a forward or backward looking term?
I honestly don’t think about progress all that often. Progress is stressful and persistantly expected in work and life. Modernity has foisted progress on us as a driving factor of existence, so I’m better off not thinking about it in order to make it happen?
And, I guess, that’s my definition: progress is what happens when I’m not paying attention. Sure, it’s shallow and self-centered, but who am I to make a gross definition of a concept with purely individual ramifications. I know for a fact that every day I “progress” on a given project a work, someone else’s “progress” is being torn down and/or hindered.
In that regard, progress is semi-monadic and, quite seemingly, a singular pursuit. Yeah, it’ll make your head hurt.