I've started this as a side project from The Library in Purgatory to look at some things that don't rightly belong there but might compliment it or even stand alone on their own. I'm not exactly sure where I'm going with this; though in part, it will likely be influenced by these two posts (here and here)--the latter of which I've imported here as the first one for this gallery, with a nod to Nick Bantock-- namely art as a process and conduit for aspects or elements beyond itself, the search for meaning, and the path of development. For the record, I don't know the first damned thing about art. We shall see where it goes.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Love, of War

Ares (Thanatos) & Eros in Hell...

don’t get to
with Shakti
you’re willing
to sleep with

War ascendant wipes out Eros. It wipes out delicacy and tenderness. Its communal power seeks to render the individual obsolete, to hand all passions, all choice, all voice to the crowd.” ~Chris Hedges

The Conflict of Need
We fight—
a perversion—
to feel our closeness, our connection,
bullets intimately wrapped
in-sipid  love,
brothers crashing into one
another in miss-understanding—love
come again.
Buried and Dangerous
His heart
   of passion
was an IED
built in secret and
buried alongside the road
in anticipation
to spray her
with the shrapnel
of his love and affection.

The Wounding of Tristan
The beauty of her
tore through him like a bullet
that knew no mercy,
leaving a wound
without relief.
Post Traumatic Love Syndrome
Her love rained down
on him
in his cold and sullen shelter,
the air raid warning blaring—
a barrage of rockets from
beyond his horizon—
unleashed in a fury
  of passion
and causing much havoc
yet none finding
their mark.

Suicide Lover
The blast of his love
engulfed her
in the tremendous
of his self-
negating display
of affection.
Decree #2
With a flourish
his ignorant and ill-gotten
disbanded her armies
leaving her heart
and vulnerable to all
manner of vagaries
and ill-begotten men.


Her love for him
was like
an internally displaced person:
having no home
or center
in which to settle
and grow.
He mapped
the  networks of her
every prisoner
of war,
and controlled source
till he knew her
centers of gravity
and could begin to prepare
a high-value-target list.

Abu Ghraib
she taught him
how to hate
She never saw
the warning signs,
in the dark and an alien language,
it was too late—
psyche sitting askew in the front seat
and riddled with his invectives
and cold stares.

Kimmett (The Satrap’s Fool)
His press
were upbeat and displayed
the latest metrics of
though in reality
he knew
that she was further away
than ever.

The Gift that Keeps on Giving
He was

We Got Him! (New Man)
Years later
she would regale her friends
with how she had found
disheveled and unkempt
hiding wide-eyed in a rat-hole.

Blue Beard
She had never been
to Haditha
but her dreams
been murdered there
as surely as if
she had
and she would never
  him again—
interloper, occupier, liar,

He was
Love s

Suicide Lover (Lament of the White Knight)
“I never
to be
the red knight,”
he said,
“and now all
I want to do
is blow up.”

Breathe, Exhale, Pause, Squeeze, Bang (Tango Down)
Her love
lay in wait for him
like a sniper
hidden around the corner
with nothing
but bad intent.

Official Denial
there’s no love,
she laughed,
he’s just a bitter-ender
and a hanger-on.

She stood
  before him,
an unexploded rocket
at his feet:
he could feel her
even with his eyes
the tension between them visceral and
pregnant with every
the wave yet uncollapsed—
what should have
and didn’t—
his mortality
brought to the fore
yet leaving him feeling never more

Even though it had
been years
since she
he still woke up
in a cold sweat
of her,
and carried that lack
with a noticeable limp.

Every thought
for you.

His love hung
limp and lifeless,
trapped on the razor wire
outside her FOB,
rotting and purifying
in the remorseless sun.

Terrible Mine(d)
Her love
in waiting for him—
the hidden tripwire,
the dusty pressure-plate—
waiting to cut him
down at the knees.

The Law of Attraction
The bullet found him
right where he said
he’d be.


Sucking Chest Wound
The shrapnel of his love
ripped through her
like a breeze
filling her with a warmth
that she had gone too long
Her knees buckled
mouth frozen mid-smile
as she sank
into a frothy bliss
all thought of resistance
fading in the dirty morning sun.

True Love
He told her,
of course,
that he loved her…
but not nearly as much
as his rifle.

No Mercy (Other)
When she said
it meant NO—
he got that
though he hated her
for it anyway.
But when they
said no…
well, he didn’t know
because he didn’t want
to no
and they got it

Triage (CSH)
She stood
in the midst of the bloody green litters
of her—ambushed—
what to try and save
and what was already dead
as the doors slammed shut
angrily behind him
drowning out the acidic revocations
of his love.

Final Kiss
The barrel
pressed against his
duct-taped mouth
her perfectly round lips
in a greasy-brown-lipstick
tongue like a bullet
hungry and lusting
for the warmth of his mouth
and the back of his brain—
the faint click
of teeth on teeth
hammer on stryker
and the hot rush of blood
to the head.

Kali Surf
Her kiss
    like Enola Gay’s
shook him
 to the depths
of his being
leaving him dazed
In the blinding flash
   shorn of malice
and love
he found himself
without a point of reference
but well
in a mind-blowing Sea
of pure feminine desire
as the aftershocks raced
imperceptibly swift
towards him—  megakiss.
  And suddenly
he knew
that he was the rock
that could neither be
broken nor drowned
and he smiled
into the tempest, the waves of her
washing over and carrying
to a place both within
and without
that he’d never known

The juxtaposition of images, particularly seemingly irreconcilable ones, is something that humans are drawn to and find inherently interesting.  The overlapping, or combining, of what does not, on the face of it, seem to go together opens doorways to new realms of thought, potential, and being, and heretofore unknown worlds and realties are made visible—the (transcendent) gift of paradox for those who are willing to suffer in between the two poles or extremes without collapsing into either. 

Romantic Love and War, alone, by their very natures, are rife with paradox and the clash of seemingly irreconcilable opposites: crime of passion being but one, obvious, example.  When imagery of the two are brought together and viewed as one (see Robert A. Johnson’s writings on madorlas in Owning Your Own Shadow) a strange, though disturbingly familiar picture begins to emerge, one that has likely always been there but which we have tried to see in only simple terms, wishing to ignore the immolation of self in the romantic flame of the other, the violence implied in conquest of our love.

Viewed in these simple, black or white (concrete operational) terms it is easy to champion Love, decry the violence/horror of War, or to conflate the two in the Love (glorification) of the violence/horror of War, of Death itself—war porn.  It is in one, or more, of these states, that the majority falls into when presented with such a paradox; that being partly dependent upon the manner in which the paradox is presented and the presenter’s (in this case, artist’s) intent.  I am reminded of Perry Farrell’s proclamation that, “…sex is violent!” in Ted, Just Admit it… 

It is just as easy to be consumed by Romantic Love as it is by War, often much easier; and more people experience Death in Love than ever will in War.  It is when we can (safely) contemplate the two together, without collapsing into the position of either, that we can truly begin to understand them, and ourselves, in a new and transcendent manner.  It is the job/role of the skillful artist to present them in this way to the best of his or her ability: glorifying neither, nor promoting one over the other, but honestly depicting both as they are.  An artist (re)creates.  A good artist does so skillfully.  A master artist skillfully does so with paradox.

The transformation of Romantic Love into War, War into Romantic Love, and both into Art, not to glorify or revel in either but to honor both and all those they have touched, that has been goal here, however skillfully attained or not.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Google Art Project

Now, courtesy of Google, you can explore many of the art museums around the world from the comfort from your own home.

Personally, I think this is cool as hell and I wonder how long it will be before I can do this in a 3-D virtual setting.

Link to the site is here: Google Art Project.

Happy Exploring.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Just What is an Artist - 2?

and real (ity) for that matter?


Do Complexes Dream of Conceptual Sheep?

Picture a unicorn.

Got it? Good. I imagine that it looks something like this; though what your imagined unicorn looks like, or the form that it takes, will be in some part dependent upon the constellation of your four functions—an interesting topic in its own right, but not for today.

Now, imagine a three. Got it? Okay. I imagine that you probably came up with something that looks like—3.

If I were to ask most people if unicorns were real, the majority would reply in the negative. Similarly, if I asked if “three” was real they’d say yes.

Are you so sure…about the three I mean?

Show me a three, anywhere. You can’t. You can show me a number of things that represent three or other things in groups of threes but you cannot show me a three. It does not exist anywhere in the material world. Even this 3, is merely a symbol, a representation. If you type “three” into Google’s image search you get these results. A similar search for “3” provides even more confusing results.

Three is a concept, as are all numbers, letters, and words and it exists no where in the real world. Yet three exists and has very real influence, meaning, and implication—type or write

$3,000.00 instead of $6,000.00 on your tax return and see what happens.

So, three/3 is not real, in the sense of the material world, yet it exists and has a reality independent of the physical world of our five senses. As has been said, the map is not the reality. An odd state of affairs, no?

We define “real” and “existence” only in Newtonian terms. Quantum physics has shown this for the error in thinking it is but has not yet shifted the predominate and commonly held perceptual paradigm, which is still almost solely Newtonian. We, as a species, are still matter/form orientated/based in our definition of existence, even though we are increasingly moving into the information/energy age where the primary unit is no longer the physical (view of the) atom but sub-atomic particles with no matter (physicalness) that exist only as energy, probability, and/or information—The Matrix. It’s not the specific atoms which make me unique but the manner is which they are arranged and interconnected to create the energetic/informational entity of me, the relation between them—it is the non-physical informational/relational reality that makes me and defines my physical form.

Along those lines, I stumbled across a couple of things this weekend that draw into question what I believe are the typically held views/beliefs on who…or what…and artist is. The lines between what is “real” and what “exists” are starting to blur and it’s not hard to imagine that they may eventually disappear altogether. What will our reality look like when we interact with information, possibly to include the forces/contents of our psyches, as entities, either in the realm of our senses or in some other one?


Robot Actress Geminoid F Debuts in Japan

The acting debut of a life like robot in Japan has received terrific reviews from the audience, but not so much from it’s co-star. The Geminoid F is a copy of a woman around the age of twenty, with long brown hair, and brown eyes. It can smile or frown, and played the part in a stage show featuring the story of a woman who was suffering from an illness which would kill her.

The robot actress was said to have had a calm voice that was a bit mechanical. The show, ‘Sayonara’, or ‘Goodbye’ was directed by Oriza Hirata, a Japanese director, at the Tokyo Art Festival, and featured the robot actress alongside a human actress, American Bryerly Long. She didn’t seem really thrilled by the experience, and stated, “I kind of feel like I’m alone on stage. There’s a bit of distance … [and not] a human presence.”

The director stated, “It won’t be that a robot replaces human beings on a drama stage, it’s more as if a new type of actor has emerged in the theatrical world.”

The android actually plays the part of…an android. Ms Long’s character is suffering from the illness, and the robot recites poetry to the dying girl, after being hired by her parents to be her caregiver. The parents then abandon the girl, leaving her to the android’s care.[1]

“…I deem it to be a remarkable fact that man, as long as he regarded himself as a creature, interpreted his existence in the image of God, his creator; but as soon as he started considering himself a creator, began to interpret his existence merely in the image of his own creation, the machine.”[2]

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