The Product Division
Location: All Over The World
Occupation: Conceptual Artists
The conceptual artists Red Cell and JC Gonzo create the entity known as The Product Division. Together they create a singular experience where they both combine their techniques, concepts, and intellectual analysis to the Product Division’s work. They speak as one, create as one, and perform as one.
I was able to interview Product Division and although they are two physical beings, they chose to answer in a singular voice. Here is what they had to say:
How did you two meet?
We were both in the film department at the College of Santa Fe but didn’t really get to know each other until we changed majors and moved to the art department. There, we began collaborating in Susan York’s art classes.
What was your first impression of each other?
While we come from very different backgrounds and disciplines, we found a sympathetic attitude toward difficult and unusual art, film, and music in one another. This affinity for complex works and actions led us to explore work that has no back wall. In other words, work that may seem overly simple on the surface, but upon deeper investigation leads to many layered conversations. Our mutual understanding of these types of pieces became a bond from which much of our work has manifested.
You call yourselves “The Product Division”. How did you come to this name?
It’s both a play on words (multiply and divide leaving nothing, notice our logo) and a statement of what societal constraints put on today’s artist (you must have constant physical product to be an artist, be a machine). We hold true the belief that the process is the product. By focusing on the process instead of the end product, we shift the conversation to the lives and efforts of the individual.
You are currently traveling around the globe working on a “year long” art project. Can you tell us more about this work?
Certainly! As emerging artists, we’ve been exploring how to make our philosophies and diverse approaches to “art making” into a sustainable platform for ourselves and other artists. Not an easy task in an increasingly apathetic marketplace unwilling or unable to support artists with their wallets. We were inspired by old school fan clubs and how they treated their community like family. We wanted to do the same type of thing. That led us to RePoRTal, a year’s subscription to our art/lives with a limited membership. Individuals who support us with a small fee receive a 12-month exclusive engagement with our work that includes private access to audio transmissions, original music, field recordings, photography, writing, video, and mail art throughout the year. We’re thinking of it a singular, yearlong work of art.
You two just left Tangier (Morocco) and now reside temporarily somewhere in Germany. Were there any particular experiences in your current travels that have left you feeling good about the state of your current project?
We write this to you from Berlin, an exhilarating and alive city that we adore. From the Azores Islands to Morocco, each location has opened itself to us and energized our work. What we’re most appreciative of is the out-of-sight response and support not only from our fans around the world, but from new allies and artists we’ve met in our quest. The warmth and encouragement we have encountered has only bolstered our resolve. There is still an appreciative underground network out there if one takes the time to look.
Now that you are in Germany, what plans do you have there?
We have some spectacular cohorts here and there are heaps of concerts we’re excited to attend like Einsturzende Neubauten’s Lament and The Knife’s farewell tour. Plus, we get to chat with fascinating friends like Angie Reed, Patric Catani, and Hanin Elias. We are interviewing new fiends for RePoRTal like Ismael Ogando and Mary Ocher and seeing old acquaintances like Shelley Hirsch. We’re having a blast!
Many artists talk about traveling around the world in hopes that it will inspire their new works of art. You two are not only talking about this but actually doing it. Why is this work important to you? Why choose art?
We believe it is important in our rapidly evolving, post-human society to provide portals past and through the control systems we all navigate in our lives. As conceptual artists, we do this by allowing the medium to be determined by the idea and by shifting focus from the product to the process. Much of what we do is not collectible or is ephemeral and invites our audience to rethink how they approach what they consider entertainment and art.
The singular entity known as Product Division is currently residing in Berlin where they continue their life’s work to embrace the “process” of creating art rather than create a “product”. Read more about the Product Division by visiting their current articles on the White Fungus and the Art of Tang online publications. To view more of their work visit their website. In addition, the Red Cell and JC Gonzo are also Editors of their own online publication titled The End of Being. If you would like to get in touch with Red Cell or JC Gonzo of The Product Division, you may email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
VIDEO #01 – Genesis Breyer P-Orridge Trailer for Festival Celestial (Honey in the Hollows)
VIDEO #02 – 666 – (Featuring Jon Moritsugu & Amy Davis)
VIDEO #03 – Triangularhead – (Featuring Monessa Bacon & Micaela Butts)