Notes from Nowhere

laugardagur, október 08, 2005

Spirits of place

Turned upside down, burned inside out and pulverised; strained, stressed and stretched to snapping; wandering about blind, hungry and tired; alone, away and overwhelmed.

I've gone forwards into an unknown. Having spent the last three years living with some of my dearest friends, I've spent these last two days moving, into a friends' flat on the hill; while he travels the world, from residency to residency, to who knows where, animating and exploring and meeting all kinds of creatures, human and animal, making his film.

I'm surrounded by hundreds of friendly, fascinated beings. I'm alive in an installation, a collaboration, a living artwork of absence and living, of parallel lives separated by age, degrees, the cold and the autumn.

While I sweep the dust from around the rooms, I see time and life lived; there's paint on the clipframes, tools on the walls, red and white. Pictures everywhere of faces, all either benignly primal or serene and refined; animals, Buddhas, flying insects, birds, dolls, mannequins, dogs and noble horses.

And there's light. Old chandeliers hang from the ceilings, imitating candles and cascading with glass jewels, or boasting five of six possible bulbs, three resting, two proud to shine. Fairy lights dripping down the walls, bringing to mind magic and forests and dew, snow, diamonds, shards of sunlight through a dark, dusty room. Little mirrors stuck in odd places, net curtains bringing luminous transparent light from the quiet tree- lined street outside, the Roberts radio with its little night light. Painted bulbs and yet more drops of snow.

There are crosses, prayer beads, plants, ladders. Antlers, antique picture frames, wooden floors. Huge rugs from Iran, an old set of white weighing scales, an empty birdcage with its little wire door wide open. Outside, a square wooden shed, a pond surrounded by reeds and spring flowers, the silent, forgotten Brighton backs. I'm starting to feel like I could make a home here.

I've moved house to a grotto, a magic place where the winter can come bid me hibernate. Where I can listen again, where I can rest in the shadows and worship the moon, not so much the sun, once more. Where I might read and think and hide away, keeping myself for some later harvest. Learn from this filmmaker, absorb some of what he has made of the world through my very pores, relishing and delighting in the abundance of this place. Living and continuing the work on this installation, re-animating myself while my friend animates the Finland world he's arriving in. And when he returns, I think we'll have stories to tell, and work to share.

Tony Gammidge


At 3:31 f.h., Anonymous Nafnlaus said...

he sounds great this guy and his flat a palace, will be round for tea on Thursday. ant


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