From issue 145 of Frieze magazine, this is painter Matt Connors, speaking to Christopher Bedford, about artists he considers his peers:
I have filled my life with other artists whose work I really love. Some of them are actual friends and some I don’t personally know but I admire their work. Witnessing people living their lives and then transforming that into their work is a really wild and very serious privilege, one that makes me constantly examine my own life and experience. I think there should be a non-pejorative word for nepotism that would mean something more like legitimate mutual appreciation.
What is that word? I don’t know it, but I want it. Seems so obvious that our friends would be those people we find fascinating, whose work and ethics are inspiring. And yet, as a cultural worker, there is a certain obligation to distance oneself from these natural inclinations (or, what is worse, to disguise them and deny them, to pretend distance and objectivity when really, nepotism is the case). A friend, Juliann Wilding, has held in her mind for a while now the dream of a publication entitled Conflict of Interest. It is (will be) what it says it is: a celebration of the awesomeness collected around her. Already, I have a million articles I want to contribute: about food, about painting, about solitude in the woods, about architecture, about music, about photography. From intimacy, such fondness grows for the exertion and attention paid over time in the service of developing a practice.