News

September 2013

I read an essay by poet Jennifer Cooke on the relation between poetics and politics :

I write angrily, melancholically, often out of desire for change and frustration or despair at the current political configuration. I refer to political events in my poems, sometimes to complex political machinations and I read them in front of people who already know these things. Why do I never write of the moments in protest which are luminous with excitement? Or try to capture how Oxford Street feels when it is transformed by direct action? How explaining to passers-by what is going on and hearing their interest and support gives me renewed hope, at least momentarily shifts and realigns my conception of ‘the (so-called) public’? Is Adam Phillips right? That we haven’t yet been able to write interestingly about happiness?

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April 2013

I am at the British Library, that quintessentially British cultural institution. The sound of the tip-tapping on laptops micro-resonating in the Social Sciences study room just about keeps me from falling sleep. I resist, remembering the day I witnessed a poor chap being reprimanded by security for taking a nap in the café area. Today, it’s the turn of two of my female co-workers to be told off – for chewing gum and for spreading their books on the table. I notice cctv camera here and there, and men-in-blue appearing out-of-the-blue whenever one of us makes an unorthodox gesture. The kind of silence one finds in the rooms is oppressive, especially when hungry stomachs start rumbling. Eye contacts are exaggerated a hundred-fold. Imagination about the other runs wild. I’d advice against trying to make connection for fear of appearing excessive. Culture has never been so tedious.

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October 2012

In the entrance hall of the tall, phallic glass tower of 99 Bishopsgate, there is a bottle of antibacterial/antimicrobial lotion on the reception desk, welcoming visitors. I wonder if I am supposed to use it, as a carrier of pathogenic germs and merms [infectious memes, my invention] from the adjacent Hackney area.

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January 2012

The end of the world. Alienation is creeping in as surely and inescapably as globalised culture has become overwhelmingly dominant and domineering. In parallel, the voice of dissent is popping up to some semi-conscious levels of society as prêt-à-entendre, half-consumed, half-dissipated in the more fashionable sections of media and popular culture. In the higher, intellectual sphere there is a call for listening more deeply to the natural world, to learn to unlearn, to revolt and destroy the process of civilisation and uncover the radiance of life and the logic for re-energising the human spirit. Same time last year over half a million copies of Indignez-vous ! (Cry out!) were sold in France, the old French spirit of Resistance calling to the new. One year on, what has become of the ‘precious gift’ of everyone finding their reason for crying out – and the chance of finding their sense of purpose and the joy of self-fulfilment? Who has been listening to whom?

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October 2010

Frieze has come and gone with all its buzz and glittering business. The press has casted a more cautious look at the fair this year, affecting a blasé Recession mood, whinging about the lack of sex and the point of its politics. While students and artists are soon to be marching down the streets of London in a massive Demo-lition against the budget cuts, recession is apparently good for us as it prompts art players to think about community values such as solidarity, relational aesthetic etc etc. Sex, on the other end, doesn’t sell as much as it used to. And political art hasn’t got much use politically – because activist/political artists are preaching to the converted. But then isn’t art inherently political, even if artists haven’t intended it to be? Those artists working in Europe have the choice not to dabble in political matters and to staple rare butterflies onto a canvas instead (which itself becomes political when a horde of RSPCA campaigners start to raise issues of animal welfare) but their lack of political awareness may bite them. On the art market in countries such as Iran, China, India and Pakistan, censorship is systematically applied on artworks showing unveiled women, nude bodies and political themes. Both censored and uncensored artworks are political in such circumstances. It has become difficult for me not to look at an artwork in terms of gender politics, postcolonialism or ideological discourse. I can’t help but spotting the prejudices, the cases of injustice and the victims of our inherent, growing ignorance. Art can definitely help raise issues. It doesn’t have to be explicit about it if the artist doesn’t give a toss. But if they do and wish to produce art as effective activism, then they should bother about how and where to place it and seek radical exposure.

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May 09

Two academics would have it that Gauguin had cut off Vincent’s ear with his sword after one of their heated discussions before fleeing, leaving the poor old soul in another bout of neurosis.

Ross and I are debating on suitable titles for his sound pieces. Agreed is The Coyote and the Sherperd (as in Sheperd’s tone), a video-sound work where the Coyote endlessly falls down from an infinitely tall cliff. An appropriate fate for the enduring creature that blows itself up a million times but never dies.

The sun is unusually shining, I am listening to old Brazilian tunes and the week-end is already well under-way with beer gardens advertising the first burger barbecues of the season. This, with a portion of chips and philosophy such as Badiou’s recent metaphysical take on Sarko’s politics, and life is still worth leaving.

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October 08 – I wish I was here http://themarfasessions.wordpress.com/

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June 08

It’s summer holiday! the International space station is calling earth for a plumber, Russians aren’t good spacial loo-makers but won the Eurovision song contest, my lover’s private view of London skylights was a success, Radiohead are playing in Nimes’ Roman arena and I’ll be there, waving in the middle.

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January 08

Back to study mode for another term – entries will be spare and few during the next few months. An increasing number of galleries are mushrooming around my living quarters in Fitzrovia and I shall go and investigate.


3 Responses to “News”

  1. ..so..where you been and what you been up to ?..stranger.

  2. I’ve been seeking inspiration! Will you send me a pics or 2?

  3. Beautiful to know you are where you are now .. . my expression is taken me futher too!! Lots of love gorgeus woman!! ..still miss you

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