Planes and Spheres

I look to my right and I see one of two windows in my apartment. The trees are partial forms – partiality in frame, one exists as a heavy, bare limb levitating across the window plane and the other has neither top nor bottom, just a thick torso with flattened brick houses standing still behind. With my eyes closed I hear the high-pitched creak of brakes and accelerating trucks, a refrain (and a constant undertoned hum of my fridge), a child, something rolling over the cracks of pavement. I see the tree limbs somehow moving; I do not hear them. The birds are gone for now.

Kwinter writes of proximal “cinematic ontology” in Kafka’s work – this new way of encountering the world through bits, through close details, fragments and exclusions. And meanwhile there is Cezanne’s world of color, layering tasks, patience and the chaos of sensation. These ways of seeing, of affect of percept on intersecting planes and ellipses (What was the logic behind the preponderance of square paintings for so long anyway? Was it the structural form of the wooden stretchers or the frame? Is it a chronology from mural to in-frame, or from portable tactile objects in locomotion to placed objects in sedentary milieus?). Thus, there are planes and spheres. Two ways of seeing further influenced by the generation of optical experience. Early mirrors as extruded demi-spheres, telescopes, glasses, microscopes, still and moving devices for the impressed image(s). Indeed, I recently dreamt that I was looking down at myself on a balcony, I was filming, you see, and I floated away – a true aerial shot à la Jameson’s notions of the postmodern space – a helicoptic shot in motion. It was curious to awaken to that image I had experience at some point in the night. I was seeing an experience through the cinematic medium- floating away and over the topographies of some distant land/brainscape. Santiago Sierra work continues to appear in the framing of my thoughts. The backs of the women, both clothed and tattooed; the boxed-in illegal workers; and Bishop’s description of Santiago’s “gesture” in placing the vendors within the institution of the Biennale as a “mutually estranged” confrontational experience of vendors/passerbys/exhibition- the antagonistic affect of his work upon the bodies of those involved and on my removed state. My body is undoubtedly exterior to Sierra’s work but my mind is not. Affect on the mind in juxtaposition to the body draws into question the idea that relational aesthetics need be a volatile experience on the body (object). Is aggression the most antagonistic experience? Maybe from the outside but from the inside a subtle physical encounter can be just as latent – particularly when the body wears reaction in its cracks and crevices. Santiago’s “participants” makes me recall Godard’s Vivre Sa Vie (1962) and the existentialist’s choice or rather lack there of, pervasiveness and proximities of “prostitution” of the body. The choices we make (?).

Outside the rectangle of my window, there is a mass of purple ribbon wrapped around a limb; articulate tendrils of ribbon stream and rest. Underneath this skin there is a massive thoroughfare of connectivity. You know, these cells talk to each other. In Body Mind Centering, you can connect to the essence of the particulate matter of choice, becoming the cell for instance. By going in you can move into a sensory experience that is quite extraordinary, or maybe just as normal as partaking in the river within us. However, this initiation into the interior is clearly visual – a clear trajectory of science on the body and on movement (the theories of how the body should move in the dance world are multitudinous from Klein to Alexander technique – each one with an idea of how we should move from the interior to the exterior). In BMC you hold bones in your hand, you look at photographs with heightening cellular visuals – a sphere within an intersecting plane – and you lie back to experience an inbetween of what this experiential, molecular body can be – in movement and in rest – on the precipice.

-courtney

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