Thursday, August 13, 2009

Beautiful Decay

Writing As Material Practice

  • Defining ‘Writing’: How do we know when writing is ‘writing’? Is this category appropriate for characterising past forms of graphical symbolic expression?
  • Scribal Technology: How do materials, tools and technological choices relate to the expression and meaning of writing?
  • Inscribed Object Worlds: How does the substance, surface, shape or size of an object inform the expression and meaning of writing thereon?
  • Writing as Embodied Practice and Performance: How does the physical expression of writing inform physical and sensory engagements?
  • Methodology: What practice- and materials-based methods can be developed for the study of past writing, from documentation during excavation, analysis, interpretation and publication, to teaching and learning?

Human Nature: Justice vs. Power

Noam Chomsky debates with Michel Foucault
Transcript, 1971

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


'As envisioned by Husserl, phenomenology is a method of philosophical inquiry that rejects the rationalist bias that has dominated Western thought since Plato in favor of a method of reflective attentiveness that discloses the individual’s “lived experience.” Loosely rooted in an epistemological device, with Sceptic roots, called epoché, Husserl’s method which entails the suspension of judgment while relying on the intuitive grasp of knowledge, free of presuppositions and intellectualizing. Sometimes depicted as the “science of experience,” the phenomenological method is rooted in intentionality, Husserl’s theory of consciousness (developed from Brentano). Intentionality represents an alternative to the representational theory of consciousness which holds that reality cannot be grasped directly because it is available only through perceptions of reality which are representations of it in the mind. Husserl countered that consciousness is not “in” the mind but rather conscious of something other than itself (the intentional object), whether the object is a substance or a figment of imagination (i.e. the real processes associated with and underlying the figment). Hence the phenomenological method relies on the description of phenomena as they are given to consciousness, in their immediacy.'

-from Wikipedia


Could Chance have brought this flower to a better place to die?

Drifting in the wind to lay beside my complement...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

New Piece Sent To Auction In Vermont

The name of this piece is:

Clouds Over Tuscany, 2003

My tears dream of evaporating into a cloud so they can travel across the world and fall down upon your cheek some rainy day in Tuscany.

I made it last weekend for an auction that my friend Christy is hosting in Vermont. She's starting up a new artist studio collective and the auction is a fundraiser.
I consider the piece to be a sculpture, the frame being part of it.
I made the drawings in 2003 while I was studying in Tuscany... they are Italian clouds...
The important thing is the relationship between the image and the text. The space between them, and the intimacy. And this within the ordered system of the Arrangement and the Frame.

Found Composition

Monday, August 10, 2009

Caspar David Friedrich

September 5, 1774 - May 7, 1840

One of the central figures of German Romanticism

Seashore with Shipwreck by Moonlight

The Sea Of Ice

Portrait of Caspar David Friedrich, c. 1810-20
by Gerhard von Kügelgen (1772-1820)

This Dude was intense.

I recently discovered the painting The Sea Of Ice, which I've also seen translated as Shipwreck (Polar Sea).

The image was a part of my daily visual landscape for about a week before I realized it was a painting. My glance had been reading it as a contemporary installation, some kind of set. A dramatic, other-worldly scene. -- As a painting it is a very different animal, and as a painting created in the 1820's... it blows my mind. The sensibility seems so contemporary: The solidity, geometry, broken bits, jagged edges.


"Analogia, or ana/logos, signifies 'according to due ratio' and 'according to the same kind of way.' Analogon, then is the proportion or similarity that exists between two or more apparently dissimilar things: like the tensile harmony that Parmenides maintained fitted together fire and earth, or Empedocles believed conjoined love and hate, or Anaxogoras thought tied the visible to the invisible realm. Both ancient and modern, its figures of reconciliation expressed how self could relate to others, how human beings might exist in reciprocity with society or in harmony with nature.
With Plato, Aristotle, the Neoplatonists, Aquinas, Kant, Mill, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and the late Wittgenstein, this elastic knot of unity assumed a wider epistemological meaning than numerical equidistance and logical symmetry. It emerged as a form of dialectics attempting to bridge the seen and the unseen, the known and the unknown. Proportionality, or the like and reciprocal relation between two proportions, is distinct from mere identity, the illusion of full adequacy in the explication of one term by means of another."

-Barbara Maria Stafford, Visual Analogy, p8

Elective Affinities

by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

"In the novella Elective Affinities (1809) Goethe brilliantly exposed and critiqued the negative dialectics undergirding Novalis's Naturphilosophie. Stretching Robert Hooke's notion of the 'sociability' existing between the opposite poles of a magnet, Goethe created a scientific romance to meditate on the mysteries of why and how people are drawn toward one another. He also expanded Newton's theory of gravitational attraction to include chemical and electrical phenomena, correlating these with the lodestone-and-iron-filing patterns of human behavior. Inspired by the fact that mixing certain chemical compounds resulted in their astonishing exchange of 'partners,' Goethe developed an extended material metaphor to capture the emotional switches occurring among a quartet of lovers. The Captain, one of the story's four characters, thus explained how close and strong, remote and weak connections—just as in an experimentally induced precipitation—really became interesting 'only when they bring about separations.' The chemist, then, was primarily and 'artist in separating.' To which the horrified Charlotte vainly protested: 'Uniting is a greater and more deserving art.'"

- Barbara Maria Stafford, Visual Analogy, p19