Artist Reception - Open to the Public
Thursday, January 13
5:00 – 7:00 pm, Speer Gallery
A head can mislead the person who belongs to it. It can be a traitor head and so spoil everything for a long time. But I believe one can survive even long term mistakes.
The Discovery of Slowness
It feels so simple what I see. It's always words I start with, but then words fail me and I hear myself dumb. And then I build. It is no longer people or things in motion, things stuck in between, that I am after. It's something fixed that is somehow more incredibly alive. Precarious balance. Static movement.
I am interested in using my hands. I carve alphabets and stamp with letterpress type by hand. I like the feel of the ink pad depressing under the stamp and the thump it makes as it hits the paper. Each time I stamp out a word, a phrase or a poem, it is different. A step removed from anything mechanical to start with, the text can remain fluid in form and thus convey the movement from the hand to the page. It is type as handwriting, Type that can not be set.
There is space inherent in text. So many words and images are hurled at us. A blink of an eye and they are gone. I am interested in text that engages and stops you in your tracks. A spatial interaction that makes you at once more conscious of the words, and of yourself in relation to them; something measured.
In this I am deeply devoted to ee cummings. Especially in his forward to his book of poems is 5.
At least my theory of technique, if I have one, is very far from original; nor is it complicated. I can express it in fifteen words, by quoting The Eternal Question and Immortal Answer of burlesk,viz. "Would you hit a woman with a child?--No, I'd hit her with a brick." Like the burlesque comedian, I am abnormally fond of the precision that creates movement.
I thought code might say it better than prose, adding a necessary shift to meaning. And then I think sometimes numbers somehow say it better than words. Is there something to numbers and patterns of space that speaks as if in words? a recognizable poetry of numbers? of space, time and number? Images of harmonic proportion; the songs of the heavenly spheres and the mystery of number and tone all rush to the fore. Euclid and Pythagoras. And then I feel so ignorant and am glad I’ve got a library card to begin again to explore. Static movement on a page. Real movement through a building.
If a poet is anybody, he is somebody to whom things made matter very little—somebody who is obsessed by Making.