With the recent acquisition of my own “domain name” and publication of a portfolio (pulling together a collection of works that are in some way “mine” – in that they either would not exist without my existence – or they would be different without my existence) – and with due respect to the squally social, economic and environmental conditions- I write this first blog post after a long time.
Though I am a prolific (if undisciplined) muser and maker – private writer, doodler and maker of film, games, artworks- there are many reasons why I haven’t blogged for a long time.
The trickiest of these is negotiating the tensions between public speech and my responsibilities within the various positions I hold in the middle of artistic and educational bureaucratic systems.
I have the feeling that that most public speech that is not couched in academic format, or made on issues other than lifestyle preference or sentiment, or within given frameworks of cultural commentary is regarded as distastefully political or promotional.
It is both political and personally risky to speak one’s private, (difficult, oddly shaped, incongruous, independent and irresponsible) mind in public.
Also, vanity demands that if I am going to negotiate difficult territory in public I should do it well- but on my own terms. So I say that ‘well’ means, playfully and with close attention. I will allow many anomalies and contradictions. The purpose is to move from an unreflective condition of amusement and attention seeker to rigorous grappler with experience- which is currently made up of everyday personal and socially constructed cinches, delights, and melodramas, that may be of interest to others because of the common treacherous grounds upon which we tread.
This is also an act of self- emancipation.
By forcing myself to communicate the relationship between the many complex strands of daily life I may force myself to integrate and simplify the mesh of forces in my head.
Of course there is a tension between sanitization and incontinent oversharing. Some experiences are only half born, others (especially those concerning experiences of others) are not mine to reveal, and because any shared word constructs something new in the world- one has to be circumspect.
However I will need some method for describing the many things that I just cannot talk about- the dark matter- that makes up the bulk of life. Marc and Charlotte have both written and thought about the significance of Gregory Sholette’s insights into dark matter and its articulation of the relationship between the few constellations of bright stars in culture and the ground, the bulk of life experience and action, that remains hidden from view for eternity.
Life is made of dark matter – I am daily engaged in dismantling conversations (conversations that dismantle me) with friends and colleagues effected by the impacts of the politics of neoliberalism and austerity. Our individual identities are dismantled along with valuable working relationships and methods in a chaotic and barbaric way by the daily assaults launched by current political contexts.
Also in stage conversations and negotiations with possible commissioners and partners on new projects- as we circle each other sniffing for affinities and mutually agreeable paths for collaboration.
So when ‘private’ moments occur I will describe them in terms of terrain (boggy, rocky, bleak), smell (sour, floral, shitty), feeling (whimpering, sweating, glowing) sound (barking, splatt!), materials (a ball of wall, slime covered chocolate) etc etc. So when suddenly a strange glumphing creature appears in the middle of a blog post – smell it, listen to it and perhaps you will recognize bits of it.
The other trouble is that I am given to endless scene setting.
I am initially driven to write something by an uncomfortable situation or jubilant moment and then never get to the point.