Introduction to the Next Step technique

(on the question of the teachability of freedom)

My involvement at the academy is motivated by the knowledge that I am part of an absurd situation: In as much as it is impossible to teach something at an art academy that the pupils will later on make direct use of. Art is that for which there doesn’t exist a linearly executable curriculum. More exactly, it is approachable from any direction. It is because of this that the teachers’ only task is to do the least possible amount of the superfluous, by this demonstrating the freedom that is desired by meeting with the unexpected. They may do anything as long as it can not be condensed into a direct -that is, forgettable- message.

My experience shows me that all such constructions that attempt to optimize the absurd task of training in art are doomed to fail. Let us not allow ourselves to be influenced by the easilly won successes in teaching! It is impossible to know who makes use of what, with what. On the other hand the risk arises of fulfilling the predictable expectation, in other words, the risk of triteness. In an art academy maximal teaching can only emphasize that the important is always that, which we notice only afterwards, this is something that is impossible to be prepared for. For this reason every art school can be considered ideal since only the non- verifiable is in effect. The influence of the instruction can only be improved if the number of experiences is raised, in this manner the degree of efficiency grows.

The main goal of my lectures was, for this reason, to spend the most amount of time interfering with dogmatism with all the tools of total radicalism. Toward this aim I am prepared to apply the perspective of media research on academic lectures on art.

The theme of my lectures is all that can be said on the background of the act of creation, without the creation of a piece of art coming about in practice.

I am striving toward making it clear that the quality of a piece of art is closely related to the number of the pre-planned -therefore not yet put to practice- steps to be taken. I am attempting to demonstrate a certain creative attitude, lacking in pathos, that is capable of even shutting out self-indulgmence, an attitude wherein the piece of art created, will be, through all this, capable of making more connections with the significant. I would like to, at the same time, direct attention to the spiritual obstacles barring the way towards inspiration.

Teaching at the academy helps me in my own activities by making me forget all that can be conceptualised, it disclosed the fact that the maximum to be reached is only valid until it is pronounced. By teaching, one is forced to put thoughts and feelings into words, this helps bring to the surface such thoughts that were meant to be said out loud. After their role is played, their absence does not disturb me.

Lastly, a bit about the difficulties caused by institutional existence. As a social being every lie and unjustice in the present and past alike upsets me. But, as an artist, I am only capable of concentrating on the future and thus I am led, not by the wish to put right,wrongs of the past, but, by the wish to prevent future wrongs from taking place. If the situation at hand makes fighting future wrongs impossible, the only thing to do is the revolt against the present system, othervise the difficulties have to be overcome.

János Sugár (1993)