COPY part 1

“All art constantly aspires towards the condition of music.”

-Walter Pater

The essayist here is referring to the pure non-representational nature of music, and how in music for and content are nearly the same. Music does not aspire to be or to represent anything other than it is. It invokes emotions, it stirs emotions, but it does not represent emotions. Language strives to represent thought. Both of these elements – the invocation of emotion and the encapsulation of thoughts – are two crucial poles to human communication. COPY is a project I’ve been working on for longer than I’d like to admit that engages with these ideas in pictorial form.

I’m displaying here the original drawings, done in wax pastel on black paper, to start the process of documenting the creation of the work. Each of the drawings was made as a response to the one ta came before, with very little forethought as to what each would contain. They could be considered abstract, but I was aware of using the basic shapes of the triangle, the square, and the circle; as well as some an-alphabetic glyphs and structures that look like notation. The feeling I’m trying to invoke is that feeling that happens when one repeats a word, over and over, until it loses it’s meaning and becomes simply a sound. It is this state, where the given-ness of the world around us, is suspended and a space of inquiry opens up. In Lacanian terms, it’s a disruption of the symbolic order. It’s a making-strange of the always-ordinary.

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Work-in-progress 2/7/17

Below are some images of branches. My current trajectory of research into ideas of metacommunicative states, language, and gesture has suggested to me an interesting metaphor for written language – dead branches. As in, the written word is to language what a dead branch is to a tree. There is also a reference to the body, in the tree limbs as stand-ins for body parts; body parts again which make the gestures from which language comes.

I also really like how the technique used here renders the branches in a soft, fleshy manner.branch-02branch-01