GOATstudio has come to a troubling fork in the road. In one direction, this experiment fades away as a naïve little side project that never grew legs and produced more than a second place competition prize, a few t-shirts, and a couple tattoos. It has been nearly a year since we got those tattoos, and the annoying, nagging realities of the world have moved this “revolution” from priority to hobby and those involved have gotten office jobs or gone back to school.
In the other direction, the same fate likely awaits us. However, on this alternate path it will take infinitely more work and the failure will be much more heartbreaking.
This “fork” was presented suddenly when I learned over the weekend that one half of GOAT’s leadership is no longer able to contribute in a meaningful way because of those aforementioned realities. This endeavor, with collaboration as its professed lifeblood, suddenly feels very much like an effort of one narcissistic megalomaniac (me).
Luckily for everyone (except perhaps me, due to the aforementioned almost inevitable heartbreak), narcissism breeds continued naïveté and I have no intention of taking the first route.
Is design still valued less than accounting, marketing, and janitorial services? Is it still prohibitively difficult to be a young entrepreneur in design professions? Are architects still marginalized to the point of being subservient to less visionary interests? Are most young architects still getting paid less than $40,000 a year in this country? Do aristocratic lobbyists, bureaucratic policy-makers, greedy developers, delusional corporate interests, and various other bastards still have more impact on the design process than artists and end-users? Are there still exceptions to these rules out there that deserve a louder voice and more appreciation? Are cities like New Orleans and Detroit still in desperate need of vision, energy, and youth? Are you still sitting at a desk drawing toilet stall details while that six-figure degree of yours gathers dust? Obviously.
That’s where the narcissism comes in. I have no choice but to continue because in my deluded state of continuous delirium, GOAT can and will, indeed must (!), contribute to the eventual resolution of these issues. I get nauseated by the thought of progress being made without us, or, worse, that things get worse without our resistance.
See there? See how I seamlessly transitioned from the bleak, singular “me” to the optimistic, populist “us”? This endeavor does not make sense any other way. GOAT needs the voices of others to be relevant. For the love of all things good, we need your voice, opinion, bile, adoration, and limericks. If you have read to this point in the post and not thrown up in your mouth (or if you have), please post a comment. On anything. On everything. After all, reality bites and you know it.
I’ll take naïveté for as long as I can.