Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Sunflower (June)

'Sunflowers' (Detail)

Visiting Van Gogh, forgetting, if we ever remembered, sunflowers were peasant flowers. Came as a shock, these readymade clichés, to the system when first they appeared over the horizon in 1889. Their ragged glory, their outlandish pushiness, their triumphal hours. Provence in June, the light tightens the eyes. Yellow unforgettably takes over for weeks, remembering hot sirocco down to the roots. Their top-heavy heads drop over with age, hundreds of black tears blow across byways, ancient fields. Their definite intention, their definitive purpose, their indefinite cycle. Someone of no fixed address has just one chance to get it right, now.   

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Cat (June)

'Hand with Bowl and Cat', Nuenen, 1885

Visiting Van Gogh. Or not. Stay at home. Inside. No inspiration. Just me, and the cat. Not trying to prove anything. Whatever. The cat, same contained position. Is it important? A world-shattering statement. Poetry, or anything, what’s it doing anyway? Universalising or particularising. The cat watches from her pillow.  It’s not an ego thing. It’s less and less an ego thing. The hand lifts a bowl of water, or milk. Water, milk. A room in June, where the art will do precisely nothing. Or something. Tap a tambourine. Say what? Make a speech. Pencil on paper. Ten minutes. Roly-poly cat!

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Starry (June)

'Starry Night' (Detail), 1889

Visiting Van Gogh, breaking up in front of us. Breaking news, tonight an unknown artist self-admitted to an obscure clinic. Breaking up before the train goes into a tunnel, those last broken lines of com-mun-i-ca-tion. Breaking down the night into night’s energies: starry transmissions, tree languages, moon strokes. Breaking off relations yet again, the artist immerses ever more with the work, the point where the points break into lines. Breaking all records. Breaking plates. Breaking bread. Breaking through the defences before museums take hold and make it old. Breaking into the place where there’s no taxes, no Napoleon, no June.