Retreat to Beautiful Objects

direct link: Retreat to Beautiful Objects

When I retreated to my world of beautiful objects.

She was a dream, not the mask but how I composed her in Tangled Garden.

A vegetative force, Nature, birth, life, death, decay, mulch, compost. Beautiful and frightening. Strange dreams, the unknowable body itself. Life consuming life to live, plant or animal. Cells fuse to make new life, new connections, new hybrids. Wood/trees; metal/circuitry; bone/grafts; skin/love. Teeming presence.

I come from a jungle, the nature I write of is not pastoral, pretty. A fibrous network of vast connections. Natural processes. We are Nature looking at herself through her own eyes. This slip of consciousness viewing the universe for a knowing moment, soon to be lost. How can we forget the hungry ghosts, the floral opera singing in us?

An ecology of consciousness. An understanding of the parasitical and angelic. Leave the savageries. Our worlds of beautiful objects call us to retreat.


What I wrote at YouTube: celebrate the unexpected popularity of my long videopoem, Tangled Garden,, a slow art film of a triptych of earth poems, Surreal, mythopoetic, a rhizoma of images, metaphors, explorations, philosophies (with English subtitles). I had originally thought to paint a Tangled Garden painting to give away when the video reached 1500 views (my daughter's claimed the painting, so some other celebratory gift), and began making a video of the process of the painting.

There's lots of aspects here - from the drawing and painting itself to photos of the making of the papier-mache mask, to a dance in the woods which inspired the figures in the painting. The fishnet gloves - don't you adore them! - will now be featured in any future art videos. I just love them!

The writing came out of a dream I was having during a nap when I was considering what to say in the video. It's more of a piece about the poetic process in the poems in Tangled Garden, what sort of consciousness is holding sway. I woke up laughing. I felt a bit strange laughing all by myself in a dark room late at night for the recording for sure!

Prefer the video without the subtitles, but they're there for the hearing impaired, those who like to read along, and for YouTube automatic translation into one of 25 languages if the viewer is not fully conversant in English.

Music is Pierre-Marie Cœdès' 'Whirling Thoughts,' from his album, "Insomnia": (with his permission). It is a great album, do go and listen.

Tree Bird Moon Ghost [microvideopoetry]

direct link: Tree Bird Moon Ghost

White fire spills from
the cauldron of the night,
where spirits gather
before they arrive
and after they return.

The site where I drew the image. The bamboo music is a snippet from Desert, a free download on LastFM.

(Yesterday I uploaded this micro video poem to Blogger, and to my album of 'Poem Paintings' at Picasa, but was unable to view either on my iPhone. I've uploaded to YouTube, instead.)

This slide went by too quickly to
include it in the micro video poem.

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Dinosaur Book of Green Fire Featured at Moving Poems

Featured yesterday at a great site for video poetry, I'm honoured, truly, and humbly, at Moving Poems... Dave is amassing a fine collection of the best videopoems on the NET and it is totally a site you should subscribe to... you'll find much inspiration for your own art in whatever genre you work in.

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'Art of Form' at SPAZ I O dell'arte Gallery

direct link to video: Theo's 'Art of Form' at SPAZ I O dell'arte

Theo Willemse's sculpture show, 'The Art of Form,' at SPAZ I O dell'arte in Toronto, September, 2010.

Theo Willemse:

Videoed and edited by Brenda Clews:

Music by Buz Hendricks:
The track is from his song, 'Night Voices,' on "Stories from Midnight Streets":
For this video I culled images from nearly 60 clips taken over 2 days - the reception, and the much quieter next day. The show was magnificent and I hope this short video gives a sense of Theo's work in the wonderful gallery at SPAZ I O dell'arte. Besides the basic editing of multiple clips, I added quite a few filters, the latter to better accompany Buz's fabulous music. Enjoy this memento!

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'The Etsy Phenomenon'

A fascinating article from Escape Into Life by Lara Cory on The Etsy Phenomenon, a "balanced account of the success of Etsy with much room for opposing viewpoints." The comment stream is interesting. I post mine here to encourage you to go there, and because this blog is my personal archives.

Brenda Clews (unregistered) wrote:

I think being able to craft an item must be an enjoyable activity - using well-worn and true tested techniques, one can simply fill in the blanks, make the item and then sell it at a craft show or on a site like Etsy. That item has a function. It's a bright teapot, or a plier-knotted silver wire around a crystal to make a magik pendant, or a familiar pastoral scene for the kitchen or bathroom or hallway. The price is right. These items brighten our daily lives, fill in the spaces in our homes, or adorn us as clothing or jewelry, are lovely little gifts for each other.

Art, on the other hand, is hard, tempestuous, fickle, uncertain, a very painful execution of the unknown. While I sell very little work, and my work may sometimes seem decorative on the surface, each piece has torn me open, exposed my core - art-making is a fragile endeavour. Where I start with a piece and where I end are never pre-known. I think making a familiar object, a basket, or sewing some oven mitts with applique of flowers, must be a pleasant activity. To me, craft has a security where the ending, the product, its niche is known, and this must be comforting to the artisan, the person selling their wares.

I can't pretend to know what art is, or even if I do it. Personally I find much museum art - or the contemporary art museums support in traveling shows, not the main collections of historically important artists and art - to be on the whole dry, academic, requiring the knowledge of a vast body of critical art theory and it often seems so abstracted as to be removed from the pulse.

Etsy's too large for me. I've taken a peek now and then, and scurried away quickly. Though of all sites selling goods on the NET it's one of the best, hand-crafted, yes, lovely, let's support the makers of the items, the artists and artisans, and vintage, oh vintage is so beautiful, I love vintage since it's often what was formerly haute couture, fine clothing, what only the wealthy could afford, and now its lace is under our adoring fingers, in our hands.

As for being in the midst of an evolutionary shift in the world in art, yes, yes, yes... surely we are, as surely as in music, film, literature... where the people speak, create, offer. There has never been so much public writing in the world, blogs are booming, and we can upload our videos for public viewing and do in the millions, with the development of Creative Commons licensed music, on sites like Jamendo, music is experiencing a revival too.

Perhaps we are entering a period of high Renaissance powered by the people.

click on icon to go to Etsy's site

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