Some artists are not very good interviewees, that is, they are not keen on being placed in the position of doing a job that either (a) the work itself, or (b) some other kind of folk such as curators, critics, historians might be doing. John Baldessari is not one of those artists. He appears on camera a bit like some giant, dryly humorous polar bear. But this artist arguably created some of the most important conceptual gestures and works of the past fifty years. For a long time Baldessari was an art professor and a kind of “artists’ artist” somewhat under the radar but always there. Wider recognition seems to have increased exponentially since his 2009 career retrospective. I used to carry around a 1990 Rizzoli book (the only major one on his work at that time) and practically memorized certain passages and images. Like a lot of great artists, he was (though not his fault) likely a bad influence on me as I spent a large portion of my MFA degree trying to create Baldessari-styled critiques of photography.  But while many of my works may have been terrible, Baldessari’s own ideas, process, measured good humour and lively incorporative mode of viewing the world made a huge impact on me. Thought now that videos on the artist are plentiful on the interweb, I would post a few here. You can also watch some of Baldessari's videos in full as well as another good 1990 documentary on the artist by Peter Kirby entitled Some Stories here: