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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

  Work in Progress - What we have been Reading.


Speak to me, strange bird of strangeness


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I then saw a clown of motley wearing: it was a Great Clown who of motley was wearing and he entered, bowed, and walked about The Stage bearing a sign. It said:

              WITNESSS YE:


            OF GOD'S  LOVE


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…that serene ocean rolled eastwards from me a thousand leagues of blue.
     There is one knows not what sweet mystery about this sea, whose gently awful stirrings seem to speak of some hidden soul beneath; like those fabled undulations of the Ephesian sod over the buried evangelist, St. John. And meet it is, that over these sea-pastures, wide-rolling, watery prairies and Potter’s Fields of all four continents, the waves should rise and fall, and ebb and flow unceasingly; for here, millions of mixed shades and shadows, drowned dreams, somnambulisms, reveries; all that we call lives and souls lie dreaming, dreaming, still; tossing like slumberers in their beds; the ever-rolling waves but made so by their restlessness.

                                                         …pacings and pausings…


          This Plato world of mystical mathematicism – it appealed to me, I to it. We sat, the Geist and I, looking at each other…or did we look through each other to an infinite regress of teapots and inkspots in fervent mirrors?

     What were we and why were we?

         …deep sadness is my sea…


    ,so struck was he by that brief abyss of absolute reality between two bogus fulgurations of fabricated life.

  The revelled, and they travelled, and they flew back…

                  but how did all this begin?

                                                   I like ideas, or the feeling of ideas, or the feeling and the excitement of having an idea…but I cannot resolve anything…well…not much…I am too much myself…I need a big car…

                           IN MY IS MY BEGINNING END


                         Heads float about me; come and go, absorb me;
                         Terrify me that they deny the nightmare
                         That they could be, defy me
                         And all the secrecy, the horror of truth
                         Drifting, ah God, along the corridors
                         Of the world; hearing the metal
                         Clang; and the rolling wheels.
                         Heads float about me haunted
                         By solitary sorrows.
                                                              Mervyn Peake

   But numbers, they too have their place. We, ourselves, shall try to remember the numbers…

    The island always seemed to have the effect of a magic wand.

                           I do not wish to write of an illness that left a man bereft in mind, but I wished to write a book for a man, unique and alone.

     The car continued on. I looked around, discovering the colours and shapes of an unknown city

                       The infinite cave of memory, immeasurably full of immeasurable things… 

                                            Was it the numbers?

  …pointless to describe

                                                             IN MY IS MY
                                                 BEGINNING END

                                   surely this has to lead to something?

                                                   Will we not ‘reach conclusion’ …
                                    even in a rented house?


                  amenable to subtle shades of meaning…




Name Me! – Go on – violate me!

 Brave man, woman, child, being – living on the edges or on the silent dots that once roared or bubbled, sighed or sang; he comes soon to ending brief as candles – seeking love in the eternal coldness.

 Some how, one day, it all stops. But else goes on. There is no stopping it – the joy, the torment, the old, the young, the children, the wars in the East, West, the peace, the moments of decision, the resolve, the collapsing civilizations and the ever-new beginnings. The hope.

We are trapped in it all. What are we?



                                             It is your turn.

Make maker make if make: you can. We are on the edges of the outside all we can do is wait and act. We are where we are. We are. Our action has the beauty of futility and yet we proceed. You can join in.
What you do is not of concern. You are as good as anyone. You are maker. You “owe yourself” as they say. Inside the potential box anything is possible. Work from simplicity.
Don’t listen to the negative thoughts. Just do. If you at least act you have achieved and hat can be a beginning.  Forget any ideas of being ‘the greatest’. All that might come. You purpose (whatever it is it will be what you make it) will be your s and it will not be to outdo some other. This is not to forget that humans compete etc But let’s not count the score.  Let us make. Forget the contempt of critics. Do it for the sheer animal joy of making.  Thus you may begin to grow. You are worthy.  Only you can know yourself.












  So strange, so twisted strange, that he grew into his own strangeness.


                                            Aby Warburg

 One day in 1920, the philosopher Ernest Cassirer asked to visit the famous Warburg library, established thirty years before by Aby Warburg. Following Warburg’s conceptions of the universe, books on philosophy were set next to those on astrology, magic and folklore, and art compendiums rubbed covers with works of literature and religion, while manuals on language were placed next to volumes of theology, poetry and art. Cassirer was taken through the uniquely organized collection by the assistant director, Fritz Saxl and at the end of the tour he turned to his host and said, “I’ll never come back here. If I returned to this labyrinth, I’d end up losing my way.”
 Years later, Cassirer explained his panic: “[Warburg’s] library isn’t simply a collection of books but a catalogue of problems. And it isn’t the thematic fields of the library that provoked me to this overwhelming impression, but rather the library’s very organizing principle, a principle far more important than the mere extension of the subjects covered. Here indeed, the history of art, the history of religion and myth, the history of linguistics and culture were not only placed side by side, but linked one to the other and all linked in turn to a single ideal center.” After Warburg’s death in 1929, Cassirer compared the shelves of the library’s reading room to, built to follow the elliptical shape of the walls, to “the breath of a magician.” For Cassirer, Warburg’s books, arranged according to the intricacies of his thought, were, like the books of Prospero, the strong hold of his life’s force.

-   -    -            -          -              -               -       -                -                -       -               -

             struggle to  ……                 there is a……                deep …………..

                         ………..the awful ……………

                                              … the yearning…………………………


                              …               ………to …..

                            ….to know   ……….. to know

                                              ……… know something………

---        ----                 -----                ----                       - -                 -----           - - -           -

                                              ON THE FACE OF THE


                                 Heads float about….

                 Lines and line breaks are tied up with the time a poem takes, with a person’s pacings and pausings.
          ….In Creeley…the effect can  be wonderfully subtle and satisfying – especially in a poem like ‘I know a man’ which seems to set sudden leaps of nervous possibility against an underlying sense of powerlessness.
                The way Creeley shapes his lines also gives you the impression that his poem is thinking itself into existence as it goes along.

                                 ‘And no story is, bad as it is, truthful.’ (Cervantes in Don Quixote.)

 … a catalogue of problems…

                         ….linked one to the other…..

                                …. all of them linked to

               a single ideal center……..

                                                        V E N E Z I A

[Written on one of those gimmick pens with a boat floating in it, which someone gave me]

                           the blue, the all-embracing sky…

                         his staff was of every colour…

The monk Ambrosia wandering gloomily among crypts…The mystery of darkness.

                                …through, reduced to yellow blades astir with an infinity of particles…

                                    as  if  Hughes  had  been

                   it was erased into our lives

                         is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my
                         is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my is my

                Why, you might ask, does he do it?

Well,   I …

                       I like doing it.

                                         …pacings and pausings…

                              “…Irretreviably lost!…”

‘ Like a panther bound, like a panther bound,
               he paces in his cell…
   his malady of mind.’

                                    Steve Boreham (and old friend c.a. 1969)

We learn as children the metaphysics of the infinite and infinitesmal calculus, although we are unaware of what we are learning…One chooses a profession that involves only five and a half centuries because as a child one day dreamed about the infinitude of vichy water tins.

         I began rummaging…

       Please understand: these are my writings. I write with different pens, this one is “uniball”, but you may not feel or see it as I see or feel it. I must, at this moment write with this pen. Not the other. You must understand. 

[And remember or note that in the first instance I will have written this out by hand in notebook and transferred it here. The very process of writing is one thing I want: the pressure on my fingers and hand, the nib moving across the page, the ink flowing to the page and then the appearance of a mark or sign, and the beauty of that meaningless sign. But it may acquire a semantic power… but it does not require it. We are limited beings.
The writing becomes mine. But it is also yours. Hence it is ours. Or it is now “new writing” it is my creative ‘uncreative’ writing. Not as in that by Kenneth Goldsmith who does interesting projects in “uncreative writing”, but creative to the extent that I place them on the page n my own way. ..and might fragment them, or play around with fonts and artwork associated. Of course the base writing was by the writers I have read –I’m not claiming to have written what they wrote – but I do claim that my use (and collaging rearranging or using texts in some cases) of these various works constitutes my own work as we are ating context, or replacement and organized placement of these signs and lines by myself. Then a reader may or may not find their way to “reorganize” them as he or she reads.]




This is me – Richard! The “reading” is reading what is on my pen.

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                             … the endless procession of faces…
       …flitted… bars of light – sad faces and glad, haggard and merry.

                          It was a foggy, cloudy morning…

                          an ebony table, inlaid

And she would have recovered her youth, and indeed, in the photographs she looked young again – as I had known her – full of life, somewhat sultry and moody – deeply wanting my love, my loyalty, my affection – but time had passed and my only great love had began to die – and now I saw this man, who had loved her – but at times it had been unbearable, how could? – but at … at those times …something had broken inside me; I came near madness…

…our fathers died, the distance increased, she moved away…and now he was dead and she was…

I hung on pathetically to a

 and began to write (an continued in this new passion to read and write, but what are words to the real love and passion of real life? (and of course, what is real?).  became my primary pass  – I was “on fire” but tormented as if indeed I was burning in Dante’s Hell (that book is puzzling his Hell seems almost picturesque!). So indeed I burned, but I was perpetually in a dark agony – and inside I had my own lands, like huge deserts or Arctics, of aloneness – I was inhabited by immense gulphs or regions of des

…it was as if I had died or been torn apart by  blood merciless wolves, and ocked, an' revile from its dark energy ideas began to whirl, to spin…I could create, and I could live forever in language and my ‘great’ creations…but the ,,  the great hope seen maybe in late afternoon or sunset clouds, and the mystery of the (immenze) possibilities of night, and some endlessly potential but always evading            Deep              this   never came, (and yet its promise had power to cause some hope and generation); and that spark, that fanatic spark of some new, would never be mine – all I had were words. My               smd dead.

And the indiff. of  I no longer counted. I was no more than (a) broke plate.

 A joke. A broke joker Toby Jug drop in a rub bin.  I had, a' tha' 'ime, 'ame nofing.

So my belieff in ‘loyalty’

and so on…

                                                What horror does the smothered scream, the twisting of the limbless hope, the desiccated death?

                   …and the moonless night was stitched with stars. Why had that tattered old expression come to mind? It must have come from a song. I was seeing the sky as I had once heard it described by some singer.
                      I had been rummaging among the records…

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…in the sand, on that beach, that thing you did, “Richard loves X”, was erased into our lives…

_________               ___________________________________        ____________

     …they died…”Why did the Grandpa Taylor and my other Grandpa die?”

_________________________________  ________________________________

         there is deep sadness, or sadness, a something wrong, deep in the heart or soul of my son

                but…                  there is hope…

                          things will, are, changing….

  I emerged from the tragedy, amid a crowd of radiant people, with the images of the two Germans falling into the ravine, and of Gragnola, virgin and martyr – out of fear, out of love, and out of spite.

For all things are baptized in a well of eternity and lie beyond good and evil.” Nietzsche.

Philosophy had become a consolation for a life of disappointment, and deep-rooted loneliness…

“Why, the leaves of this plant are exactly like my little green charms!” cried the fairy in surprise. “This would be a good place to hide them.”
   So she carefully fastened one of the charms on to a clover leaf.

          The empty and haunted house is a giant enigma of which the key is lost.

                     What’s missing? Nothing. But that is everything…in a word – that flower of life Titian and Raphael took by surprise….The figure presented such a powerful embodiment fo reality.

          Thus for the enthusiastic Poussin, the old man had, in a sudden transfiguration, become art itself, art with its secrets, its passions, its reveries.
            …by dint of drowning the contours of my figure in kisses of half-tint, I have contrived to do away with the very idea of drawing and other artificial methods, and give her the rounded aspect of nature itself. Come closer…from far it disappears…
(From ‘The Unknown Masterpiece’ by Balzac.)

           … always invisible, even though one crossed  and recrossed it daily…

                                                                        all those years

                                                                 of furtive


                    I thought it fitting that my
last hours

                                    I thought it fitting that my last hours                       

                                                              I thought it fitting

                I thought it

Dekker also talks about the extraordinary innovativeness of the work…

           “Four and a half minutes of e flat…”

  I thought it fitting that my last hours in the town should be spent with an artist whose work was lost on the world.

   Mongolia, Mongolia, you are mine. Mine. Mongolia: I love you because you are Mongolia.

The painter said that man could dream nothing stranger than the simplest image that occurs to another dreamer.

But are not our deep emotions the poetry of the mind?

[Despite Camus’s rejection of the need for fundamental insight  and the possibility of  hope inside the hopelessness of the eternally rock-rolling Sisyphus,  Brian Greene, after reading Feynman…Brian Greene says: ‘The search for the deepest understanding of the cosmos became my life blood.’] [But they fail, for the search, so noble in itself as it continues as long as humans exist, is endless.]

              All her journies have begun and ended with this enormous, quiet country.

                                    Those fierce eyes…

    Also I love the isolation, secularization [!!] of the words, phrases, fragments of language or utterance.

[They fail, the search is endless.]

                Alone in the darkness she might have been the woman of three generations before, who had been addressed each day for fifteen years.


               Knowing nothing of death or time or the time we know: the joy and endless excitement of children inhabits eternity. It is impossible that this excitement should cease.

The woman might therefore have considered the chief advantage of so many years spent among unlooked-for plains, with a man who had still not explained himself, to be that it had once allowed her to postulate the existence of a woman whose future included even the unlikely prospect of half a lifetime spent among unlooked-for plains with a man who would never explain himself.

[No idea where this is from but a wild guess is some prose work (stories) by Laura Riding but I am not sure.]


                                It was erased into our lives.

There were weeks when I spoke to no one on that great estate.


       A valley of real suffering and often deceptive joys, the sight of empty skulls, or of withered hearts?

              Although their cold, hard faces were worn, like those on coins withdrawn from circulation, their withered mouths were armed with avid teeth.


………………………… …………………         ……………
 Although there is still controversy, most physicists agree that probability is deeply woven into the fabric of quantum reality. Whereas human intuition, and its embodiment in classical physics envisions a reality in which things are always definitely one way or another, quantum mechanics describes a reality in which things sometimes hover in a haze of being partly one way and partly another. Things become definite only when a suitable observation forces them to relinquish quantum possibilities and settle on a specific outcome. The outcome that’s realized though, cannot be predicted – we can predict only the odds and ends that will turn out one way or another.
  This, plainly speaking, is weird. We are not used to a reality that remains ambiguous until perceived*. 

*Note this was originally without the 'not' but I am sure this must have been the original
text, from a local library book (I think it is the one, but I don't own it) about quantum mechanics and chemistry called  Absolutely Small as I recall it, although I forget the author. 



     They are the eyes of a man who has gazed beyond death.

                        ,for I would not relinquish the memory of his soft kiss  for anything on this earth.

The Feynman diagram for beta decay of a neutron into a proton and an electron antineutrino via an intermedite heavy boson.

The young man has found himself adrift, between the dark voice of despair and the moving, sacred harmonies of the cathedral bell.

         There are few psychic wounds that solitude cannot heal.



                                                        (   it was erased into our lives


                          …having apparently decided that a book this ideal, this virtual, this ghostly could hardly be considered a non-exportable treasure of ‘le patrimoine national’.

   …I had the privilege of perusing…

           …sheets with no more than a miniscule scatter of words on them…

                                             I have shored…up against                      

….having understood virtually nothing…

   his face bore the ineradicable trace of some bitter sorrow, some unending pain

                       All suffering falls silent in her presence.

   He didn’t look too much like a bridegroom, … with a twist of his dry face, and a screw in his body, and his hat jerked over the bridge of his nose, and his whole sarcastic ill-conditioned self peeping out of one little corner or one little eye, like the concentrated essence of any number of ravens…


                                        Repetition is truth.

                                 As the work went on and ramified.



                                          ‘The Book of the Book

   perform for  a

  sudden  spasm

                                                                          he became abstract
                                                                       he moved
                                                                       he became
                                                                       what is it endures?
                                                                       What vanisheth?

 For the beauty and wrath of the body are not enough.                                                             

                                             it was erased into

In loneliness are the fretting voices of the mind, crying, Let us not be silent. Let us manifest life.

But the tree was a seed and a stem before it bore fruit: do we not grudge it the time of growth.

                       …the form spoke with the light hissing whispers of serpents. The terns cried aloud, finding no foothold in the air. They cried and sank…

                 There is no more death in her womb.

Instead of necessarily keeping a diary or a journal (such are the or some of the things he has told me in conversation are valuable, or can be….); Richard Taylor keeps notebooks so that as he reads ( and sometimes he has several different books ‘on the go’ – say books on art history, or a novel, or a book about the sun or cell biology, or sometimes a children’s book): he will take notes from these books and date them. Richard has said to Richard T. tha

Wildly optimistic and happy housewives dance across the surfaces of the work of  Mark Ussher. Referencing N.Z. cultural iconography from the 1950s and 60s, Ussher’s paintings have a tough enamel shine that…life of a 1950s housewife…suburban home.

…Ussher appropriates advertisements of the 1950s and 60s…the simple [   ] slogans clearly contrast with the more invidious advertising messages of today.
     …inform his art practice…Utilising…and measured markings… thick industrial enamel paints…to imbue
    …to imbue….                  …to imbue
  vivid gleam……..exudes                        …exudes

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Margaret Butler  (1883–1947)

An example is this fine figure The Dreamer ca 1932 (Figure 24), a study of a young girl in reverie. The composition is subtle and rhythmic. The girl is seated with one leg distended lethargically, the other drawn up under the drooping head and arms to form a flowing compact form…The surfaces are varied to break up the fall of light so that the movement of forms is complemented by the flow of light and dark…an emphasis on the inner world of thought and the subconscious [sa with Rodin’s The Thinker], though, in Butler’s work there is a more subtle erotic overtone…

[From N.Z. Sculpture – a History by Michael Dunn.
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Cameron Webster                                                                           Born: 1983, Auckland

Sculpture.  Maori narrative extensions of Maori Mateitea (oral histories)…as well as  memories and expressions of his own experiences.

Webster’s vessels evoke the role of kaitiakitanga (guardianship) and Ipu Whenua (placenta pots) where such forms are used for ceremonial purposes to keep intact the traditions of planting the placenta back into the land – feeding our own being with the earth…

Webster develops a connection with the ocean and the land not only through the choice of relevant political themes, but also through the more elemental components of texture and the tactile qualities of each piece
   …carrying forward the mantle of Maori art…

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  (Margaret Butler)                                                                                   25.8.2011
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She was almost forgotten when she died in 1947, coincidentall7y in the same year as Frances Hodgkins. The writer Eileen Duggan, in her Evening Post tribute to her at the time, saw in Margaret Butler ‘the frustration of the artist whose body could not cope with the imperiousness of her gift.’ Yet she overcame her natural disabilities to be acclaimed as a sculptor in France – an important measure of her achievement.

[From New Zealand Sculpture – a History by Michael Dunn.]

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  4 a.m.    (the morning of  the 24th)                                                                 23.11.2011
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The plants best suited to such circumstances [the El Nino drought and dryness deep in Australia] sent down deep roots to search for moisture, used narrow leaves and tough bark to minimize evaporation and loss of vital fluid, and scattered seeds capable of regeneration after lying for long periods on the dry earth. They were frugal in their eking out of nutrients and prodigal in their reproduction. Some of them, such as the stands of eucalypts which spread a blue haze under the hot sun, actively enlisted the assistance of the conditions by strewing the ground with incendiary material that would burn off competitors and stimulate their own regeneration. In the pyrohistory of Australia, the vast and sleeping continent is reconfigured as an arena in which the gum trees kindled a fiery vortex.

[From  A Concise History of Australia by Stuart McIntyre.]

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William Thomas T. Trethewey     (1892-1956)

Trethewey’s statue of Dr. Margaret Cruikshank, erected in 1923 at Waimate where she had practiced medicine, has an effect of simplicity and strength (Plate 9). The Cruikshank is notable because it is one of the rare monuments of a woman (other than Queen Victoria) commissioned in NZ. As the first woman doctor to practice in NZ, Cruikshank won community praise for her role as a selfless care-giver who had died ministering to her patients in the influenza epidemic of 1918. Trethewey…She is depicted clad in an academic gown to indicate her exceptional status as a qualified doctor at a time when few women took up the profession. Sometimes called the ‘Florence Nightingale of the South’, Cruikshank embodied moral values that let public support for commemoration by a statue.

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FATHER: Our guilt feelings? Not so. I have never quieted my guilt feelings with words alone.
STEPDAUGHTER: It took a little money as well, didn’t it, it took a little dough! Three hundred lire he was going to pay me ladies and gentlemen!

[Moment of horror among the Actors.]       

SON: [with contempt towards the STEPDAUGHTER].
That’s filthy.

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…but I assure you he was very pale, at that moment [To the DIRECTOR]. You must believe me, sir.
DIRECTOR: You lost me some time ago.
FATHER: Of course! Getting it thrown at you like that! And never mind the ferocious girl. She’s trying to heap opprobrium on me by withholding the relevant explanation!
STEPDAUGHTER: This is no place for longwinded narratives!
FATHER:  I said – explanations.
STEPDAUGHTER: Oh, certainly, those that suit your turn.

[From Six Characters in Search of an Author by Luigi Pirandello.]

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                             …Already all confusion. Things and imaginings. As of always. Confusion amounting to nothing. Despite precautions. If only she could be pure figment. Unalloyed. The old so dying woman. So dead. In the madhouse of the skull an nowhere else. Where no more precautions to be taken. No precautions possible. Cooped up in there with the rest. Hovel and stones. The lot. And the eye. How simple all then. If only all could be pure figment. Neither be nor been nor by any shift to be. Gently gently. On. Careful.

[From Ill Said, Ill Seen by Samuel Beckett.]
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[At this point the DIRECTOR returns to the stage to restore order.]

FATHER: But that’s the whole root of evil. Words. Each of us has. Inside him, a world of things as they are inside me, whereas the man who hears them inevitably receives them in the sense and with the value they have for him, the sense and value of the world inside him? We think we understand each other but we never do. Consider: the compassion I feel for this woman [the MOTHER] has been received by her as the most ferocious of cruelties!
MOTHER: You ran me out of the house.
FATHER: Hear that? Ran her out. It seemed to her that I ran her out.

FATHER: If only we only could forsee all the evil that can result from the good we believe we are doing!

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   Nothing now for the staring eye but the chair in its solitude.





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 Getting to the bottom of things mattered a great deal to Ester. Surfaces, she felt, were a ruse. They couldn’t be trusted. There was so much more beneath the surface of words and people, beneath everything in fact, and her secret passion was to plumb these hidden depths.

   …this formlessness of water carried a promise of dissolution… a return …[full of] possibility.

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  Most of what I record or write in these pages is quoted from other word stores, but I do write my own things.


‘So strangely strange that he grew into his own strangeness.’

That is me writing around the time that Michael Jackson died. Not that I like him (or any pop music as such but I can see he had a huge talent, and what I have heard by him is very good).

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        (Life consists of these little touches of solitude).

[From Camera Lucida by Roland Barthes.]
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[..on Jude Rae (NZ artist)]

  ….she even eschews the hectic red* of fire extinguishers 

     …bottles, boxes, and vases…

 …translucent blue vase counterpointed by a tall brown bottle and whole [is thus] transformed…

                                    …orange edge…

…great dignity
                                               ..that is all light…

 …where light is absorbed and reflected
                       and made to sing…

  (Mathew Browne)

                           …loops and circles poised…

(Peter Gibson Smith)

[From T. J. McNamara At the Galleries in the N.Z. Herald 31.8.2011]

* ‘hectic red’
 is a ‘quote from’ from Shelley’s Ode to the West Wind. [I dare to surmise]
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   “…Facts – The Popular Encyclopedia contains nothing but facts, the facts of the world, clearly and straightforewardly presented.” Saying this, he seemed to be sunk in a well of facts, all of which spelled the walled-in dismal hopelessness of human life. The world’s books were boxes of flesh-eating worms, crawling sentences that had eaten the universe hollow.”

[From In the Beauty of the Lilies by John Updike.]
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   He stood baffled, looking about the dining room for some exterior sign of the fatal alteration with him. There is no God. With a wink of thought, the universe had been bathed in the pitch-smooth black of utter hopelessness. Yet no exterior change of colour betrayed the event…three decades of exposure and ingrained dust: none fo these mute surfaces reflected the sudden absence of God from the Universe –

[From In the Beauty of the Lilies by John Updike.]
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  We gather now what we call space,
  this glassy void round Aniara’s hull,
  is Spirit, everlasting and elusive,
  and we are lot in coeans of the Spirit

 She is borne in something which exists
 But need not follow in the ways of thought,
 Through God and Death and Mystery she goes,
 Our space-ship without trace or goal.
 Oh, could we but turn back to our bse
 (now we have fatbeomed wht our space-ship is
 - a tiny bubble in a glass of God.

                             a tiny bubble in a glass of God.

[From Aniara by Harry Martinson.]

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  Thompson’s oft-repeated concerns about the growth of philistinism, and his belief that poetry is as important to human progress¹ as economics, are more relevant than ever in an era when the market  and the mass media treat works of literature and  art  as  com-
modities to be flourished and consumed rather than for thought and debate².

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1.     We should perhaps write “progress if this can be defined”. In what way have we or can we progress? Is there such a thing?
2.     The vigorous and hopeful words that only a young, idealistic or ‘hopeful’ man would proclaim.

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 Light had felt its way in under the dry green window shade above the spines of the radiator and was standing beside here bed when the unhappy tangle of her dreams fell away and she dared open her eyes. Like a leak in a great tank of darkness the light had seeped into all the familiar things of her room.

    …The world is like stones: dreams and thoughts flow over them.

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  Photography for Ghirri is a communication that, as pure appearance, produces amazement and dislocation, for it introduces into the world something not yet shown, not yet revealed. This thing is specific: an event or moment unlike any previous one, a perceptual exception – a variation on lived experience, but one with something new  and surprising hidden as latent within it. Photography dissolves our certainties and makes every instant unknown. It makes distinctions between true and false arbitrary in the sense that its description of those polarities is overcome by its interpretation of them, an exposition in which these opposites overlap – and that overlap is part of photography’s identity. In exposing and expressing and demonstrating the “doubt” between real and unreal, Ghirri describes their boundaries and attributes…he brings into play another trait: “simulation”, the equivalence between true and false on the same surface. In the Atlanta (Atlas; pp 25-28) work, the map, or part of it, becomes a “sign”; through cropping and removal, something potential shines through. Ghirri reveals language by developing an “abstract” language of geography.

[From a book of Ghirri’s photography.]

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Ponchielli    (1834-86) ‘The Dance of the Hours’ [The Gaconda] based on
a text by Victor Hugo.

The Book Launch of 'Celanie' by Jack Ross and Emma Neale and 
introduced by Michelle Leggott


Poets Michelle Leggott and Jack Ross.

Emma Neale - artist. She did the art work for Jack Ross's book 'Celanie'...
A book of Celan's poems.  



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Luigi Ghirri 1943-1992 [49]

   Paul Dukas – ( re..increasingly critical standards’…)

 He points out that the word oceano (ocean; p.26), or black palm-tree icons (p.28) to show a “writing” that, isolated or focused on in this way, has no meaning but is solely “appearance”. Here there is yet another interpretive use of the power of photography to “suppress” the world in order to rake it to another dimension, a phantasmatic dimension that conveys a way of looking and seeing, nothing else

            It becomes a poem, everything is poetry – everything is everything is everything.
   Photography is a limbo-link universe, a ghostly habitat without boundaries or limits, a territory in which fog reigns supreme, as it does in Emilia where Ghirri grew up.

Here the boundaries of winter and night mingle, intersect, and fluctuate, making things inseperable.

[William Eggleton “It’s beautiful here, isn’t it?’… a book of photographs by Luigi Ghirri]

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Comparatively speaking, the later development of Alison Duff was more private, more idiosyncratic and consequently less known. Unlike Macalister [Molly] Duff became reclusive, rarely appearing in public…The Sargeson is a half-length figure shoing the writer in animation as if engaged in a lively discussion (Figure 54.)…emphasis on the mental rather than the physical…
                                         …has a broad, blocky approach to the modeling…

[Dunn on NZ Sculpture.]
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  Photography’s recognition of itself not as a simple condition but as  a participant in visual limbo from which to extract forms, opens up to an infinite horizon for evoking a description of the world. No one can claim to be the world’s interpreter or witness: at the same time, if photography drops any claim to the absolute, its repertory becomes limitless…In 1970 Ghirri’s work  began to manifest an enigmatic exchange between reality and fiction, anticipating photography’s future in work by Cindy Sherman, Sandy Skoglund, Gregory Crewdson, Laurie Simmons and others who would “theatricalize” the image as a universe created in front of the camera. Although Ghirri does not claim that stance, he prefigures it in that he confuses the apparent world with the real one, “fuses” together real  and unreal “realities”, as in some of the images comprising Paesaggi di cartore and in Ferrara, 1981, from Topographic-Iconographic (Topography-iconography), which raise questions about the reliability of the gaze. 

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majuscule / ‘m ae d z, skju : l /  n. & adj. – n. Paleo 1  a large letter, whether capital of uncial. 2. large lettering – adj. of, written in, or concerning majuscules. [] [] majuscular / aa’dz ^ kj ule® / adj. [F. f. L majuscula (littera letter), dimin of MAJOR]

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Ponchiello, Amikare

In fact, Ghirri’s work usually addresses the most profound dimension of photographic thought: the metaphysical distinction between real and apparent…The photograph shows not reality itself. It is a communication that “simulates” reality – a pure appearamce.
    One way…this reciprocity between the real and apparent was [shown] by bringing mirror and object into the same frame. [In the ‘mirror photos’] Ghirri was working toward a photograph that “sees” itself, that is reflected in what happens around it – an empty surface over which images pass. It has its end within itself yet also has an immediate relationship with actual things – indeed, it too, is a thing, which explains Ghirri’s use of visual collages (Modena, 1979, from Still-Life; p. 57), and dissolves (Modena, 1972, and Fotographe del periodo iniziale [Photographs from the early period]; p. 61), devices that transform the photograph into a substance, and object, an object, perceived through its materiality. Also, the merging of two or more images on the same surface demonstrates the capacity of the photograph to appear and disappear, to hide itseld and reveal itself – a capacity [that allows?] no reassurance of  the “true”. In combining these elements Ghirri revokes the “truth” of the image and makes of it an “event” created by an author, a window that opens onto the world yet is open, nondefinitive in form.

  Freed from its burden of reportorial clarity it becomes a place of surprises. It integrates many discourses of the surface, which can become a receptor for flows of images of every different type … aleatory meanings based on chance encounters between images – posters juxtaposing life and death (Modena, 1973, from Kodachrome, P79.), paper bricks and real bricks, or the surprise meeting of Disney and Fidel Castro (Modena, 1972, from Paesaggi di cartone; p.80)

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For the first time concept and theory attained a new status.

Jim Allen was crucial …of conceptual and Post-Object art to…

        …video with sound [then new]

                         [crucial]                  [attained]

    process rather than product…[emphasis on]

          not everyone accepted the …  convulsions…

        Theoretically anyone could take part.

What was the function of an art gallery, how did it transform the objects…, how did it… validate certain works and values while denying others?

W.R. (Jim) Allen, Arena, 1970, mixed media with barbed wire, Barry Lett Galleries, Auckland.   Installation.

Leon Northey, Real Time, Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth. Installation.
Marte Szirmay Untitled, 1975, University of  Auckland. Stainless steel, 1350 x 1600 x 1350 mm

Carl Sydow Meander / …

[Only some of many.]

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                  In the west a red moon
                  And suddenly my memories fit me

[From  ‘The Long Route’ in Dunedin Poems. By Bill Direen.] 

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    The materials…
               …long established,,,
    bronze, steel, paint; …
                  My images are small and complex…but [x] is about ideas not the precision splendour of hand-worked material.

    I often cast direct from life –

  I work in bursts…through change. I use the elements: arms legs, spheres, bikes, apples, rulers, as building blocks and play out ideas until the products seem inevitable. I cant plan a work in advance:

                                 I enjoy using human elements or [ say] the complexity of a motor bike. … A cube or sphere can be any size…[re a work he made in 1972-73]  People are about 2 metres tall, a motor bike is ridden so we know its size…what happens to our perception if we if we distort this relationship? And what do we relate our sphere to?

[Greer Twiss in New Art – SomeRecent N.Z. sculpture and Post-Object Art.  Ed. Jim Allen & Wystan Curnow.]
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  Today I helped Bill  (my friend who is a mechanic, he is not ‘literary’) to fix my car. Before this, Victor and I went for a walk and played over a Capablanca ending in a game he played vs. Lasker and by 2 pm Bill arrived.
 I helped as much as I could with the car by taking off bolts etc. E.g. I took off those to the water pump cover. We were re-installing a new head-gaskett so we did the pump also and intended to change the auto-power steering belt, First we had to remove the cover. It was hard going, working to get it all together before dark. We made it but the plugs were a problem (my plug spanner’s “wall” diameter is too thick) but Bill managed to get them in.
 Went for a test run.
 Doing this, a part of me yearned that I had been Practical Man.
 Bill is sometimes..... he was his father’s “biggest disappointment”. His mother left his father, who later wrote a letter apologizing for the bad things.
 Yet Bill is ......ic, ruined their lives.

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 I draw as a means of quitting myself of thoughts that wont work any other way…as a way of establishing interest. I cut books, magazines…I cut out images. I keep boxes of them I move the images around,, things tickle my brain and puns, contradictions, relationships, develop, are established then get put away. Drawings are sort of playways to broad concepts, very seldom specific except for technical problems.

I don’t want to provide solutions, I want to confuse with a sense of direction.

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 Its still pliable but looks and behaves in a manner alien to rope.

                Alien Rope

[Greer Twiss (ibid.) (except the italic phrase)]

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Note re Greer Twiss.

He was our art teacher at Tamaki Intermediate in about 1961-2. ‘We’ boys (not I as I was a very quiet boy at school) used to give him ‘hell’ and we called him ‘Mr Tiwsted’.
He was pale and looked quite thin and strange with shock of violently red hair. I recall thinking even at that age that he would have to turn out to be a genius (he was then  unknown as a sculptor) genius with such a look etc He married in that time another teacher there called Deirdre Kirton. She started the Tamaki Chess Club and we used to come down and play (later I became the Club Champion as did my friend Glenn Turner before me.) Bill and Barry Lee (later to become members of the Communist Party and leaders of the PYM in the late 60s to 70s) played, as did Noel Eyre.

I remember his sculpture in K Road. I recall ‘approving’ [ca 1969] of this work as I knew about Giacometti etc (It is an important addition to Auckland’s culture.)

More recently in late 2011 I contacted him on FB. Deirdre remembered me.

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  The works are still being made. They change daily, hourly, sourly.

 Did you know that you can die from the fumes given off from melting lead?

[Greer Twiss. [Ibid.]]

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 Instead of necessarily keeping a diary or a journal (such are the or some of the things he has told me in conversation are valuable, or can be….); Richard Taylor keeps notebooks so that as he reads ( and sometimes he has several different books ‘on the go’ – say books on art history, or a novel, or a book about the sun or cell biology, or sometimes a children’s book): he will take notes from these books and date them. Richard has said to Richard T. that some of the ‘entries’ seem either inane, eccentric or pathetic and asks: “who would want to read these entries or comments or fragments large or small?”…and Richard 221 feels it is al rather futile but Richard 10 has told me it gives them a kind of pleasure as if  he in fact being read already by a large (or small readership). It is a kind of enacting. A kind of talking. A conversation with the universe or with himselves. (Poor Henry Bones.) The resultant ‘mix’ is a kind of record of his and other’s consciousness or of their creative works and ideas. He doesn’t necessarily read useful or ‘deep’ or meaningful works. Once he read a book about dust. A Lady Bird book gets almost equal status with books on mathematics, or art, or a novel in fact there is, they say, no limit on what they may or may not or will or will not read.

 Their comment is that in some cases it is the texture of the writing so sedulously or sensuously recorded (almost always onto paper in special note book – the pen in most cases has to be also of  a special kind, Richard 88c indicates that he-they are ambitious for a fountain pen, indeed Richard 20990 recall when he first had an ‘Osmiroid’ and how he loved the feel, action and act of that pen, and indeed its wonderful and mysterious name.)

 But Richard 2553 records that more recently the meaning (or perhaps the textual texture) of what he is reading is also assuming a greater significance (Richard 34 expostulates that this is leading to a “twee effect” where by choice bits are taken out and “exhibited” as in a kind of rather pathetic or weak minded ‘Commonplace Book’, but in this Richard 240 is quite adamant there is no concern here, as each being’s “scrawling”, in blue red or green or black ink, is unique to his her or their self or selves…)…

 It has indeed been said that this is a sub-section of the Infinite Poem but Richard 233333333333 maintains that every one HE knows groans and rolleth in upwards their ball eyes at such bold balderdashing slobber blobber…; but R 300 feels that the idea that in theory, at least, anything could be used as, as well as being a ‘conscious’ trace of ‘consciousness traced’ and an “Aspiring to The Infinite” and or a total trace of all sentience; or indeed as being a ‘history or congregation of sentience in part’; these fragments (small or large, combined or not, interactive or not, self-talking or not, useful or not, meaningful or not…) and ‘scrawlings’; this huge splitting craquelure desiring some hint or haunt of God or some transcendence hinted if not arrived upon, these appendiae, screaming through the gold godless dusk of the ending start of evening’s sensual turn, these indeed can or may be used as elements or factors in larger ‘Art’ works or projects such as EYELIGHT or works or bizzaros spawned if not spurned fomr and by the near infinite psuedo-randomly generated “hoo-echo” of the well known Bone Ghost…in case in any in any any in any case Richard 20,211 feeleth quite certitude….that, that, that there is both a therapeutic and a Creative aspect.

  Of course, any pathetic bastard who mutters all day to itself and holds forth endlessly in “grand converse” with the driveling Universe (or even God Herself) and various of the Elite and indeed the well known Stars, many of whom are Richards friends and have lived at least 200 million million years to Explode alive: and stupid bastard of such a mien or methodless method is clearly, and quite wonderfully, insane.  

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Richard said...

The writer of this is quite clearly insane and exhibits zero talent. This is the problem of the internet. People of quite inferior status and education venture projects and opinions that are clearly not for them.

The common people must realise that the world is not for them. Men, males, most, must realise that they will never amount to anything in this world. They will in most cases not even enjoy being alive.

Glamour, sex, excitement and destiny: all this and much more is for The Better People.

The rest are as motes of dust.

Anonymous said...

why is there no contact details here, I want to talk to the author

Richard said...

I need to know who you are before I give my contact details. It is called "Quid pro quo."

Crap Informer said...

MAJOR problems with crap here mate
fuckin' major

Richard said...

Wonderful - we need this kind of thing.