How to Live in The Time Of Monsters

 … It is indeed my opinion now that evil is never “radical,” that it is only extreme, and that it possesses neither depth nor any demonic dimension. It can overgrow and lay waste the whole world precisely because it spreads like a fungus on the surface. It is “thought-defying,” as I said, because thought tries to reach some depth, to go to the roots, and the moment it concerns itself with evil, it is frustrated because there is nothing. That is its “banality.” Only the good has depth that can be radical.

Hannah Arendt

Since these mysteries are beyond me, let us pretend to be the organizers of them.

Jean Cocteau, The Wedding Party on the Eiffel Tower

“The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”

-Albert Camus

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Fall Evening on The Inlet

This gallery contains 12 photos.

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Leave a Little Window Open: a Breeze Will Wake You.

“Every morning, even before I open my eyes, I know I am in my bedroom and my bed. But if I go to sleep after lunch in the room where I work, sometimes I wake up with a feeling of childish amazement — why am I myself? What astonishes me, just as it astonishes a child when he becomes aware of his own identity, is the fact of finding myself here, and at this moment, deep in this life and not in any other. What stroke of chance has brought this about? What astonishes me, just as it astonishes a child when he becomes aware of his own identity, is the fact of finding myself here, and at this moment, deep in this life and not in any other.”

Simone de Beauvoir, 1946 (Photograph: Henri Cartier-Bresson)

Beginning with memory of childhood in the course of which a panel of false mahogany, situated in front of my head, played the role of the optical provocateur of a vision of half-sleep, and finding myself one rainy evening in a seaside inn, I was struck by the obsession that showed to my excited gaze the floorboards upon which a thousand scrubbings had deepened the grooves. I decided to investigate the symbolism of this obsession and, in order to aid my meditative and hallucinatory faculties, I made from the boards a series of drawings by placing on them, at random, sheets of paper which I took to rub with black lead. In gazing attentively at the drawings thus obtained, “the dark passages and those of gently lighted penumbra,” I was surprised by the sudden intensification of my visionary capacities and by the hallucinatory succession of contradictory images superimposed, one upon the other, with the persistence and rapidity characteristic of amorous memories.

My curiosity awakened and astonished, I began to experiment indifferently and to question, utilizing the same means, all sorts of materials to be found in my visual field: leaves and their veins, the ragged edges of a bit of linen, the brushstrokes of a “modern” painting, the unwound thread from a spool, etc. There my eye discovered human heads, animals, a battle that ended with a kiss (The Bride of the Wind), rocks, the sea and the rain, earthquakes, the sphinx in her stable, the little tables around the earth, the palette of Caesar, false positions, a shawl of frost flowers, the pampas…

 

 

Max Ernst, quoted in Max Ernst: A Retrospective

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A Collage Poem of Random Pieces

Maurice Sendak

…we’re riddled with pointless talk, insane quantities of words and images. Stupidity’s never blind or mute. So it’s not a problem of getting people to express themselves but of providing little gaps of solitude and silence in which they might eventually find something to say. Repressive forces don’t stop people expressing themselves but rather force them to express themselves; what a relief to have nothing to say, the right to say nothing, because only then is there a chance of framing the rare, and ever rarer, thing that might be worth saying.

Gilles Deleuze From Negoitiations

No one can build you the bridge on which you, and only you, must cross the river of life. There may be countless trails and bridges and demigods who would gladly carry you across; but only at the price of pawning and forgoing yourself. There is one path in the world that none can walk but you. Where does it lead? Don’t ask, walk!

Friedrich Nietzsche

robertogreco: “Georgia O'Keeffe with the Cheese, Taos Pueblo, New Mexico, Michael A. Vaccaro, 1960 (via Tejal Rao) ” Backstory: “[Vaccaro] had spent several days unsuccessfully trying to gain O’Keeffe’s trust when he discovered a topic she loved –...

Georgia O’keeffe looking through a piece of cheese.

Since we are already dead, let’s make the most of it!

(Zapatista proverb)

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Video: Amid crime and blight, Natalie Thomas plants peace and community

In small acts of love we may find our way into the future.

Vox Populi

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Since 2011, Natalie Thomas has been the caretaker of the Unified Positive Effect Community Garden at the corner of Climax Street and Estella Avenue in the Betzhoover neighborhood of Pittsburgh. Thomas, 57, said the space used to be a jungle of overgrown weeds and grass that attracted neighborhood crime. Now people know not to “mess with” her garden, and she said she’s noticed a reduction in crime on the block.

Whether it’s working with neighborhood kids to plant flowers or pulling out pesky weeds, hosting garden tea parties or scurrying door to door at local businesses to gather donations for gardening materials, everyone in Beltzhoover and nearby Allentown seems to know of Natalie and her positive personality.

She’s a person who smiles with her whole face. She loves kids. She sings and writes poems about her garden. Natalie will chase you down the street, waving her arms and yelling “Hiiiii!”…

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Drums of Passion

At some point in my late teenage years, I was looking through a bin of miscellaneous foreign music in the Tower Records store on Broadway in Sacramento, and I came across this album. I don’t remember what about it caught my attention. I wasn’t that into African music or drums music at that time. In fact it was from this album that I developed an appreciation for African drumming. I have always been open to new musical experiences, and most likely this seemed like something worth a listen. I did not fall in love with the music right away.  There were a couple of songs that caught me immediately, and a few more that with a few listens I knew this was one of my favorite albums and remains so until now. There were many times when I was feeling wrung out and flattened by the world that I would put this album on. Almost immediately and through the whole of it, I am carried away by the pure spirit of the music. There are only a few albums that I have found in which every song affects me in some way that brings me up just on the power of the music. Vladimir Horowitz playing Beethoven’s 5th piano concerto, Wish You Were Here(the album) by Pink Floyd, John Coltrane’s My Favorite Things, Keith Jarrett’s Koln Concert and a few others but this is definitely one of those. As far as I am concerned Genius of the musical variety. And as with those other few musical masterworks, every time I listen to it I find ways to love it more. And as in the case of those others I stumbled upon it quite at random. I just think of how much we miss in our lives when we stick to our rutted paths and not let the wind blow us around a bit up in the air so we can get a good look at what is around. I have not been as good about this lately, I need to put on my wings and take a look at what I might have overlooked or misplaced. Let the wind or drums move me where they will. 

 

 

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Color Shadow Play II

A few days later more shadows in the studio. I have to do something!

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