The Order of the Third Bird is an association of like-minded individuals (together with an intimate penumbra of splitters and apostates) who work at the convergence of performance, aesthetic theory and what might be called “art appreciation.” Members of the Order cultivate inherited practices of sustained attention suitable to the occasion of a work of art, mobilizing these experimental modes of practical aesthesis in a variety of interventions and engagements. Formal exercises predominate. A discipline of the senses is pursued. Both learning and judgment are bracketed, in conjunction with a carefully controlled hedonistic asceticism. Temporary metempsychosis can occur, but must not become permanent. Protocols for all this exist, and the Order keeps, transmits, and refines these protocols. At stake: the relationship between art objects and those who regard them.
Associates of the Order include Sal Randolph, D. Graham Burnett, Jeff Dolven, Joshua Dubler, and others.
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The Order has recently been sighted constructing events at the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Chipstone Foundation’s Object Lab, Mildred’s Lane, and the Warhol Foundation/Creative Capital’s Arts Writers Convening.