The days are starting to feel routine. I get up, maybe go for a run/walk (still haven't quite gotten up to speed on that) eat breakfast, make cyanotypes, work on the computer, cut and paste, maybe make a drawing, read, do a crossword puzzle. I'm getting into a rut. I think I'm almost done with the tile piece. I'm sort of sick of making cyanotypes for now. Maybe a few more.
Each person that looks at the piece comments that the spaces are important. This is a good thing, not only visually and for the strength of the piece, but for my sanity. If I had a few assistants we could cover a wall easily, but if I'm going to enjoy myself, this piece will stay somewhat fragmentary. Which I kind of prefer anyway.
There is a poet here from the UK, Dominic McLoughlin. He has written a bit about art and we've talked about art and literature and how the writers and artists here might interact more. He had some interesting things to say about the tile piece. He saw writing and water, and pointed out that there had just been a review of a biography of Keats, and that his epitaph reads "Here lies one whose name was writ in water...." Keats died so young, age 25. It struck me that a great title for the piece could be "My name is writ in water." People could get the reference, or not. It gives a whole different reading to the piece, because I was ready to call it "Leaving Babylon" (after the Bob Marley song, "Exodus") or possibly just "Babylon." The Rastas view Babylon as a place of sin and idolatry, and the name comes from Babel, as in, Tower of. Illegibility, confusion of language, destruction of the temple, all that is in my mind. But the ephemeral nature of the piece suggests the fragility of life, something that is on my mind now with several friends being ill or their spouses being ill. I liked the elegiac quality of Dominic's suggestion (although he didn't suggest it as a title.)
We projected youtube videos on the wall in the courtyard last night, a la Cinema Paradiso, and laughed our heads off at Monty Python and SNL sketches. (The good ones.)
Here are the words written on Keats' tombstone:
THIS GRAVE CONTAINS
ALL THAT WAS MORTAL OF
A YOUNG ENGLISH POET
ON HIS DEATH-BED
IN THE BITTERNESS OF HIS HEART
at the malicious power of his enemies
desired these words to be engraved
on his tomstone
"HERE LIES ONE WHOSE NAME
WAS WRIT IN WATER"
FEB 24 1821