Highlighted Member: Buzz Spector

Highlighted Member: Buzz Spector

Buzz Spector
Member since: 2009
Member Level: Family Member

What was your favorite exhibition at the museum?
“Favoritism” in the first question? I must say that my favorite aspect of CAM’s programming is the critical breadth of its exhibition roster, which from year to year adds to my enthusiasms about art and ideas. Within the program, of course, since I arrived in St. Louis in 2009, are projects by artists who are also friends or colleagues of mine (shout-outs to Lauren Adams, Bad at Sports, Jessica Baran, Joyce Pensato, Lari Pittman, Stephen Prina, Tom Reed, and most of the artists in any given Great Rivers Biennial). New to me, but exceptionally moving, was the Rosa Barba installation, Desert—Performed, in fall 2012. Reading as mental cinema, music as mental oasis, and words as shadows of memories or premonitions showed me the desert as a spatial equivalent to the artist’s mind as a site of contemplation, serenity, and inspiration.

Do you have a favorite program or event?
Openings are always fun, but the Distinguished Speaker lectures also inspire me to ask questions and to talk about the answers later with my students. As a reader (and often a writer) of poetry, I love the occasional readings by distinguished writers.

Why are you a member of CAM?
My membership money goes to support CAM’s admirable curatorial team, beautifully designed publications, and many kinds of public events I enjoy attending.

What made you join the Museum and why would you encourage others to become members of CAM?
CAM is an important advocate for adventurousness in art, for the conceptual and critical rigor of its practitioners and commentators, and for giving the visual arts in this community a stand point for taking art seriously. Joining for me was a way of making concrete my respect for the Museum’s value to myself and my community.

Why is CAM important to St. Louis?
I’m a working artist as well as an educator and I believe that supporting a community of artists includes supporting the community’s institutions. CAM is engaged with surveying the terrain of contemporary practice, both to bring important artists and thinkers here and to make visible here and elsewhere important art and ideas coming to fruition in this community.

What excites you the most about CAM’s future?
I see CAM as an evolving entity, especially in relation to the ways in which art itself evolves in tune with, or in opposition to, cultural and critical issues in society. The Museum is brave and forthright in the ways it responds to issues in the larger world, but it is also a kind of laboratory inviting viewers to join in on occasion in modeling future worlds.

Past Highlighted Members