Two images from two separate projects: Heavy Water Sleep (top) and Fragment (below).
Gaston Bachelard, ‘The Poetics of Space’:
“Thus we cover the universe with drawings we have lived.”
Tim Ingold, ‘Lines’:
“The line that goes along has, in Klee’s terms, gone out for a walk.”
“Wayfaring, I believe, is the most fundamental mode by which living beings, both human and non-human, inhabit the earth. By habitation I do not mean making one’s place in a world that has been prepared in advance for the populations that arrive to reside there. The inhabitant is rather one who participates from within in the very process of the world’s continual coming into being and who, in laying a trail of life, contributes to its weave and texture.”
Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book of Disquiet’:
“To live is to crochet according to a pattern we were given. But while doing it the mind is at liberty, and all enchanted princes can stroll in their parks between one and another plunge of the hooked ivory needle. Needlework of things… Intervals… Nothing…
Besides, what can I expect from myself? My sensations in all their horrible acuity, and a profound awareness of feeling… A sharp mind that only destroys me, and an unusual capacity for dreaming to keep me entertained… A dead will and a reflection that cradles it, like a living child… Yes, crochet…”
This evening I began working on an idea I’ve had for a while which incorporates the World War 1 postcards I was given by Tom Phillips. The idea was to show these postcards on a wall but with only a few the right way round i.e. showing the portrait (they are all portrait postcards of soldiers, most individual, some with other people). The rest would be displayed reversed showing either writing or, as is mostly the case, nothing – they would just be blank. I wasn’t sure how this would look and so I began putting the postcards up on my bedroom wall and fairly quickly I could see that the postcards, displayed in this way had an impact.
There was something about the blank postcards which was particularly resonant and the more I looked, the more I could see what it was that leant them this quality. On most of the blank postcards there is a motif running down the centre of the card (dividing the address from the text). These lines are of various designs, some very simple, others more elaborate. I decided to scan a few which can be found below.
For me these motifs have something of the grave about them, perhaps because they are each shaped a little like a crucifix, and they reminded me of some of the memorials I had seen in the Montparnasse Cemetery in Paris.
And as I started making connections, I thought of the X paintings and those I discussed in a previous entry – Black Mirrors and thought about how these marks could be incorporated into a work just like the symbol of the ‘X’.
I also thought how these various motifs/symbols resembled the botanic labels I’ve had made, each engraved with the name of one of my ancestors such as that of Henry Jones (below).
And finally, one last connection between the motifs and a work I made in November 2006, soon after a visit made to Auschwitz-Birkenau.