Tuesday, September 8, 2009

About the process

In lieu of an artist's statement for the exhibit, ukiyo-e: pictures of the floating world, the artist, Binky Walker, and I prepared excerpts from our correspondence leading up to the show. We felt that it might be interesting for those not involved, to have a glimpse into the collaborative process engaged in between gallery and artist: me, toward an understanding of her artistic process; she, toward an awareness of her indirect connection to centuries-old Japanese ideas; and for both of us, through this back and forth, an intriguing acknowledgment of a convergence of ideas, across cultures and centuries. I will post segments of our conversation to this blog over the course of the next week.

Why do I muse on clouds, or attend to what is fleeting?

The impulse of my mind is to grasp onto what I believe will not change, transfixed by what I hope will never leave me. Impermanence is too frightening: I cannot fathom a self this precious and so determinate. Yet in comparison to the billions of light-years that are but a moment in the heavens, my human life is more fleeting than I experience the clouds.

what I believe will not ever change
what I hope will never leave me
interior resonance

determinate - what does this word really mean?

precisely determined or limited or defined;
not continuing to grow indefinitely at the apex;
being final or conclusive

All our human measures are determinate - years into seasons into days into hours into minutes into seconds - subdivided infinitely to make smaller and smaller measures of permanence. Clouds defy language, remain unfixed in their beauty. Despite these increments and measures, clouds cannot be pinned down in time. Perhaps it is a condition of humanness to be shocked by mortality.

Is this your struggle? It seems to me that you have found peace in your exploration, in the real self of the clouds, and your real self.
Are you still struggling?

When I understand muself as part of...as cloud...there is nothing to struggle against -- only peace. But my mind does not rest here. Even with all this evidence, even in peace.

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