subsequent examinations of post-berlin performing, or: becoming the conscious desire to understand autoerotica, or: why philosophy scares me.

(Disclaimer:  I “used to be” a nihilist, in both the Nietzschean and Big Lebowski-an sense.  Live to embrace exposure, in whatever form it takes.  Also, please do not try this at home.)

We hear what we want to hear.  This is because we go through life listening for the answer to ourselves.  Sometimes I wake up in the morning and read philosophy.  Over time this reading has taken on a certain indulgence.  Kinda like you get out of bed and dunk your face in ice cream before proceeding to wash it.  Nothing like a mix of delicacy and disgust to enhance the senses for the first time.

For many years I lived in order to hear somebody say, “you’re a fucking mess” and so I kept reading philosophy.  Eventually I took a break from philosophy and the message came.  The answer is almost always a response to a response.  (In certain circles they call this echo “healing” but whatever).

Now I sometimes read philosophy but no longer for the answers.  The present reading more suggests embarking upon this gleefully tragic bath.  From whence you emerge the world is subtly brighter.  The act of questioning resumes suddenly heightened, at a slightly more delightful clip.  This activity, however, demands moderation.  Philosophy, says Yeats, will clip an angel’s wings.

So, one day I’m reading this Philosophical Text and Philosopher Guy proposes that, because claiming The Good as the source of human thought is preposterous (and has been for centuries), the last, great classically philosophical project will be to investigate why human beings are inclined to compulsively choose the pursuit of nihilism.  This project will not be undertaken from afar; as a collection of data, set of questions, hypothetical observations.  This project must be lived, it must be performed: to be a living, breathing answer while maintaining one’s intention to discover and philosophically assimilate. Practically speaking, one must walk a path that grows atop nihilistic compulsion; she/he is absolutely committed to learning the way, despite the obvious danger of the path ending in a lake or over a cliff.  If one isn’t killed or driven mad by the process, it’s likely assumed that one may constructively build (something) upon the lower echelons of biological rapture, and/or grow aware of decay as a sixth or seventh sense.  Darkness, despite our best attempts at negation, does have bounds.

Whatever the case may be, Philosopher Guy says that if one truly believes that nihilism reveals a truth above and beyond psychological deviation, one MUST perform this project. There is no other avenue for metaphysical (and possibly societal) growth.  The non-existent cry is simply too heavy to ignore.

In plain text, Philosopher Guy is basically proposing the following:  will we ever understand exactly WHY we keep fucking ourselves over (and over again)?!

I am a shamelessly grandiose being and so I am going to act upon the assumption that yes, this investigation is possible and does result in growing.  I am going to assume that you want to hear what I have to say and thusly that you’ll come to believe you’re growing because I said it and you want to trust me.  As it turns out, I HAVE learned a thing or two about compulsively pursuing nihilistic revelation.  My process was not unlike the aforementioned proposal, at least I figured as much & felt like I was performing such an undertaking for a plethora of people (meaning maybe 2,000 tops over the course of 9 years); so I’ll wager to explain how this performance works and why it really, really doesn’t.

It gets you kicked off airplanes.  It finds you coming out of blackouts wandering barefoot through the streets.  It results in needing to apply for a lot of new passports.  It accidentally cuts your thumb in half.  One minute it gracefully shields you all divine-and-incognito-like, the next you’re a statistical example of alcohol withdrawal on international flights.  Also you keep dating men with BPD.

I’d like to wholeheartedly believe that the way to make sense of this rubble is to practice better hygiene, eat more vegetables, exercise regularly, meditate, find a qualified therapist, quit the booze and drugs and read a lot of Alan Watts – and there is, herein, a reliable solution, if you’re ready to accept/embrace it.

The caveat:  None of these activities, or all the healthy living in the world, cancels out one’s desire (nay, need) to reveal nihilistic urgency.  The pulsation is, for lack of a better term, essential.  If anything, a return to “health” results in a progressively finer clarity, an increasingly intuitive comprehending of one’s destructively compulsive nature and the subsequent affirmation of nothingness qua truth therein.  There is no overcoming this pursuit, we just get glasses and face it daily, a little braver & more attentive.  The beautiful, and at times frustrating, mystery is that we grow to desire this clarity, we live for a more spectacular and specific consciousness of/in it.  Over time, we realize that while we can’t expose nihilism, we have learned how to live in it’s brilliant suspension.  Our nature, in a sense, pauses, smack dab in the nihilistic center, and eventually this pause becomes our waking life; the destruction revealed from afar in overwhelming detail; we no longer question it, we no longer need to because in stepping back from it, we observe it and are finally satiated.

If there is wisdom to be uncovered here, it is perhaps that human thought begins with a need to deconstruct destruction, and over a lifetime’s course finds an acceptable result in destroying deconstruction.  (In plain speak, we seek a way out until the day comes when the seeking magically ends and we realize we’ve been out all along).  This trajectory is not undertaken in the light of absolute compulsion, nor philosophical theory, but as an act of joy/bliss.  Like joy, nihilism can be a wonderful sight; a glorious enormity.  A reality that bears witness.  The very truth revealed in acceptance.

I’ll end with this:  the more you seek to expose nihilism, consciously or otherwise, the more you convince yourself that it’s existence is questionable.  The more you struggle to step outside it, the more you mistakenly insist upon an alternative that reflects it’s non-existence and is not there.  The reprieve comes when you realize you’re suspended.  You have paused the investigation.  You accept and more is revealed.  The solution may be simplified but this pause is very real.  We have found that commonly sought after experience known as “relief”.

One day we may learn to stare at the sun.  When that day comes we will be far enough away (precisely and/or microscopically) to avert total blindness and intolerable heat. Patience is paramount.  Hence the pausing.

As far as when and where the pause goes – well that’s entirely up to you.

In all likelihood I am basically rehashing the beautiful peculiarities of thinkers much better equipped to analyze just about everything (or saying absolutely nothing at all, I’ll accept that).  I’m going to pretend, however, that I’m not.  Because in less than three weeks I’ll fly to Berlin again, the same Berlin I wandered about barefoot in; the same Berlin that beholds half my thumb.  Because recalling what we saw and how it felt and realizing that it felt, well, bad, is the only way we stand a chance at living as/for the art and sound and processing we create.  Life is simply better lived resounding in the breath we take.  I don’t advise committing suicide unless you absolutely have to.

For more information, updates, ideas on/for upcoming Berlin performances, email me: valeriekuehne@gmail.com

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this is what happens when you disappear for (about) a year, or: if I can make it past 30 then so can you

Facebook results in Bruxism.  So does Roulette.  So does Cocaine.

Here is the truth:  I honestly believed I was living my life as closely as humanly possible. By closely I mean to death.  By death I mean absurdity, absolutism, annihilation (and anything, really, that offered momentary comprehension).  Cut your arms, eat a pillow, you become a sort of God.  Reality chokes, existence fails and you can prove it.  After all, from darkness shines the brightest light.

Oh, God.  Fucking good and fine until you barf to death.

I do not know why I felt this way.  I probably never will.  The madness pushes in like a bad toenail.  The madness hurts a lot more than you realize and so the value increases, which makes it hurt more still, especially to those around you.  I wanted everything to disappear. I wanted everything to appear immediately.  There is no reason; search for one and nothing changes.

I made myself sick.  I kept myself sick.  I fled to the woods.  I fell in love.  I tried again.  I tried again.  I tried again.  I flew to Florida.  About a month later, I checked Facebook. Somewhere between the daily sun and the unnecessary updating of time and space I became a point.  Singular yet undifferentiated.  I learned, in what felt like a heartbeat, that what I believe (trust + observe) is constantly transforming.  Life is nothing but a beginning and we are always too late to tell.  This understanding took the form of a reflex that had been present in my skin every day but had gone yet unnoticed.  As nice as this metaphor sounds I assure you the reality is infinitely bigger.  If you wake up with a second mouth you don’t go back to bed.

I truly feel that one day I vanished and fell back out an entirely different reality.  I woke up.  I keep waking up.  People tell me that I’m happy, calm.

So here’s the meat, the part I really want you to know:  If you feel trapped in your own life, if you are aware, in microscopic time, of the drudgery of embodiment, and this pervasive sensation is forcing it’s way (sometimes successfully, sometimes not, but always uncomfortably) into your consciousness like a thrombosis; specialized, screaming, then YOU ARE NOT ALONE and your suffering is always temporary.

This is an obvious but extraordinarily difficult element to grasp because suffering teaches us that the only way out is in, and we’re only really in if there isn’t an out.  A bastardized Void.  There is profundity in the ceaselessness of interiority.  There is a certain beauty in destruction, a fundamental grace in decay.  However, there is also vastness.

By vastness I mean that probably you are not important.  Neither Am I.  Seriously.  Take a moment to observe: all we tangibly do is hop around, our only clear purpose to run into things (and we do, well, often dramatically so).  This is not to say that life is pointless, but that the greatest, most inarguable truth to it all is that LIFE IS CONFUSING.  I have come to believe that this confusion, the same confusion that promised me intractable insight into the nullity of living, is anything but.  The confusion is a gift – because once we’re confused enough we simply let go.

For the record, letting go is not giving up.  Letting go is becoming aware of how tightly you are holding on and of the panic you feel when your bones start to loosen.

This may be our legacy, and it is absolutely worth the struggle.  Accept this as you do digestion, earnestly and without embarrassment.  YOU ARE ALL YOU NEVER WERE. Accept and “you” will learn the meaning of SUDDENLY.  All “you” know will pop.  “You” let go and “you” change and probably, if you so desire, make shit better.

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Open Call: Trauma Salon

The Super Coda is accepting submissions for Trauma Salon, an ongoing attempt to understand the nature of Trauma in Performance.  Submissions should both consider Trauma as you understand it (have been exposed to, seen/felt) and how and why that understanding might change if Trauma becomes the focus of a performance experiment, in hopes that Trauma, as we experience and present it, might become more accessible in both a palliative and performed context.  This call is open to all disciplines.  As artists we can HELP EACH OTHER and GROW MORE PRESENT.
The following questions are to be addressed (in some sense, at least) in your submission:

1.  How does Art change you?  Radically speaking, how does one lose oneself (as audience/performer) in witnessing/engaging in a performance and become someone completely different?  Under what conditions do you think this internal shift might transpire?
2.  Why is Performance necessary/urgent?  How can this necessity be internalized and expressed?  Why should it be?  How can this necessity be used as a tool for perpetuating/embedding Performance as a social practice (or collective spirituality, modern catharsis, insert at will).  In essence, why must we, as performers (as well as human beings) do what we do?
3.  Why the the hell do you make art/performance/music?  Why is your practice important?  Why continue doing so?
Your proposal may suggest a means to inflict Trauma in performance.  You may attempt to physically disclose and permanently lose/change yourself.  You may find a way to be traumatized by the audience (or simply sign up for this).  You may simply perform as a means to uncover the essence of Trauma as expressed in performance.  You may make an enormous noise.  You may tell us what you are truly afraid of.  You may injure yourself. You may heal yourself.  You may terrify everyone and no one.  You may grow a second head.
The first installment of Trauma Salon will take place on Thursday, February 19th.  If you wish to submit a proposal for the opening night please send to valeriekuehne@gmail.com no later than January 22.  Subsequent installments will unfold between March – Whenever it’s over; submissions for future performances are rolling.  All events will be held at Panoply Performance Laboratory in Brooklyn, 8 – 111p.  This series is part of a curatorial/intentional shift that is now taking place at the space.  For a detailed account please reference the link to the space above.
it should be noted that this series is NO SUBSTITUTE for any therapeutic measures one may take in their life to alleviate/comprehend Trauma as inflicted upon themselves/others.   We are considering Trauma in both an etymological and systemic sense, abstractly as much as physically, in hopes to better understand and intensify the nature of the art we make and yield some hope/help.  We don’t really want to hurt anyone.
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OPEN CALL: Time Dilation and the Acoustical Orb(it)

A few weeks ago I had the honor of sharing a bill with Natura Morta, three gentlemen who are, in my humble opinion, conjuring the only sound possible, right now.  Something happens when they perform.  Something surpasses determinable acoustics, even basic compounds such as tone, volume, texture, attack, timbre, performance, resonance (although these cues are very operative and probably relevant).  In seeking explanation I find myself partway through La Mont Young’s Dreamhouse and one foot (no, both feet) in a Turkish Bath (House of Leaves also comes to mind).  What I am struggling to affect is this idea of a sonic space so rarely encountered that one completely loses oneself inside, confusion turns to absolute fixation, and whatever the physical space surrounding the sound was is now no more.  Everything but this living, breathing acoustical sphere disappears.  We have tapped into something infrasonic, wind-in-tunnel-dog-out-window. This is a sound not without danger, as it may house the secret of time.

That being said, here’s the Call:

Call for Entry:   Time Dilation and the Acoustical Orb(it)

The Super Coda is accepting submissions for an evening of acoustic experimentation on November 17th, 2014 at Panoply Performance Laboratory. Up to three musicians/ensembles will be invited to present work that confronts the possibility of sound that physically alters both the listener and the space in wherein listeners live.  This Call is open to all.  Consideration will be given to those who work specifically within acoustic fields of Scraping, Sculpting, Noise, Object Manipulation, gongs, Voice & Performers investigating sonic phenomena.  (Also anyone who is fucking conscious of what is going on here)?!

If interested, please send a paragraph explaining why you want to do what you want to do to valeriekuehne@gmail.com. Links to any websites/audio/video you find pertinent to this particular project or that you just really like, especially if I don’t know you I want to get to know you.

DEADLINE:  November 7th 2014.

Act Swiftly.

many thanks,

The Super Coda

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I hate critical aesthetics because I probably love *them* and so I have these thoughts to share about the process-based dance opera, Any Size Mirror is a Dictator (ASMIAD)

(In response (joyously, inevitably) to

http://hyperallergic.com/154216/this-opera-doesnt-need-you/ ;

Why Make a Piece in the First Place?

&
Any Size Mirror is a Dictator is a Petri Dish

(FYI Any Size Mirror is a Dictator is an operatic collaboration between Panoply Performance Laboratory (PPL) and Dreary Somebody)

Everybody is wrong.  That’s the point.  ASMIAD is the all the (wonderful?) activity in their heads; the dictators, the dancers, the musicians, the spectators, the question is why does it feel this way?  That some (any) of us can coexist in this space?  (My best friend had to leave the hyperbole as a stereotypical symptom of B.O. and it was fucking hot).  (Others stay to leave to write about it, apparently).  If we can coexist, these are the (operatic) ways you may cognize coexistence (I think); direction, production, pattern-identification, The Result – the opera is only as alienating as life itself.  And so the question “what is real?” (in properly Absurdist fashion) is not an inappropriate result of observing this piece.  Who can/is (co)existing in this life? Are you?

I mean, look.  Look at what’s happening all around you, does anybody not see the velocity of thoughts that became a thought that became a book in an opera.  On the floor.  These bodies, they stink, the viscerality hovers.  Inside a facial expression or operational tick or essential tremor and we all stand alone, I suppose, insofar as we follow/persevere.

There really is no sense beyond sense thank god.

So pay attention.  Don’t go anywhere else before or after this opera, a reversion back to prior theories that properly distinguish chaos from pseudo-order.  This never works, a purely aesthetic criticism, so don’t think about it.  Then all the parts that don’t work in your head, aesthetically or otherwise, splat, lay em right down here.  That’s what ASMIAD does.  All the action dumped *right here* fulfills survival, (albeit under the guise of (co)existence, and the subsequent problematics of agency, emotion, intelligence, and cognition thereby).  We want this (living) to work and so we have to examine it, create it, and most importantly, act as observers to this opera, this life.  Fuck the semiotics of alienation.  Fuck history.  This is a process(ing) by which we are, and it’s kinda gross and primitive before we ever had a name for it.  Sweat, yes.  Smarmy birth, transgression, the inside of an ear.

A nasty net of hypotheses laying on the dance floor over the 7 week opera run in town, and now you have to cognize yourself but as soon as you’re cognized everyone will recognize you and so you choose to live wondering why they recognized you or to cognize them. There are so many ways to mirror these choices, sublingually, sonically, verbatim, and as many as possible are laid down right here, in a gallery made human but not forsakenly so.

So we observe, and now we may ask:  what the fuck have we been missing?  Why don’t we understand this, this opera thing and what it wants of us?  (Because, after all, isn’t this what we are all responding to)?  The fact is, ASMIAD has the missing parts and they are concurrent.  They are touching.  This is unity.  Which is a very big bitch to grasp.

Just be fucking present.  When you do this works.

On a deeper note, don’t be afraid to be entertained

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The Apocalypse (And Resurrection) As Witnessed by a Slice of Aged New York Cheddar

Allow me to preface this piece by acknowledging the formidable writing
ability of this blog’s progenitor.  I must also praise the detailed chronicle of her
personal implosion, and later rebirth, both having occurred within the past year.
My words are simply meant to convey the perspective of a continuously evolving
existence running both parallel, and yet remaining deeply entwined, with said
events.  I believe that a similar rebirth occurred in this existence when an Idea,
combined with a Purpose and juxtaposed against both internal and external conflict,
reached a conclusion previously unimagined.

The Personal Day of Reckoning (The Individual Apocalypse?) can take many
forms: You can lose your mind and allow reality to dissolve, your Self retreating
into a bizarre, isolated netherworld far removed from any real Existence.  You can
snuff out a facet of life itself, including the Whole, to beget a premature end to any
number of components.  Or perhaps you retreat into the barren world of self-
destruction and abuse to prolong a suffering; a suffering that becomes valid only
under such depraved circumstances.  For me, the Harbinger came in the form of
someone who far surpassed me at what I had come to establish my entire identity
upon.  This arrival, and subsequent revelation, in turn began what I can only
describe as a Descent.  When you define the Self upon a singular act, the utter ruin of
such a naïve notion can result in an excruciating impact to nearly every sense.  The
Sinking begins, and the events that follow only proceed to magnify the quagmire
into which the Mind drops.

Even so, no matter how dire circumstances become, as you journey in life (or
stand fixed in place from an alternate point of view), people enter and exit under a
force that can only be described as Fate.  I’ve become a firm believer that everyone
who crosses the threshold of your individual existence arrives and departs for a
specific reason (be it asphyxiation, inspiration, or obliteration).  I can attest to the
individuals in my life who have made such a profound impact that both an Idea and
a Purpose arise and become defined by their presence.  I’m a firm believer that
once all factors align, the road illuminates ahead, regardless of how difficult the
journey may be.  The luminescence of this ethereal guide reveals the path through
the ephemeral void of Doubt.

In my experience, it’s never easy.  Any excursion has its truly memorable
(harrowing?) moments, such as being locked in a house with no power and no food,
in temperatures reaching below zero, and your only way of keeping warm is
burning someone’s stash of New York Magazines.  The ice forming on the roads can
so easily cause the flimsy vehicle known as Life to crash, detonate, and immolate
under an incompetent operator.  And yet, miraculously, you survive; you necessitate
living by finding something to live for, and an Idea that reaches deeper than the act
of simple survival itself.

A movement in the great composition of Life can last any variation of time,
but the length can ultimately be determined by a drive to begin a new chapter
entirely.  I suppose for some, this can be a means of escape: perhaps a step towards
some arcane goal or veiled, corporeal notion.  For others, it’s simply a continuation
towards a chasm; an Abyss from which there is no turning back.  For me, the last
piece was written over two years, and only recently was it finally brought in a full-
circle towards closure.

Acquired personal feelings penetrate the harshest levels of innate judgment
and/or prejudice, and I’ve found that, as the Descent may become the Ascent, so can
the Lost return home to witness the monuments constructed under their influence
through absence.  The Inspiration, the Purpose, and the Idea all combine into
something so much larger than what was previously foreseen through the lens of
nascent elements still emerging from the protoplasm of a life.  Art (and really life
entirely) still make about as much sense as ‘Limbs falling off, on a Saturday, at dusk,’
and yet perhaps, within indiscriminate scenarios, the Whole regenerates and
becomes stronger through the process of the Parting.  Out of that dusk arises
a ‘Thing that was now and now was, and I loved you here and I loved you then, all of
us together, and someone calls it Heaven.’

 

– Alex Cohen

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MANIFESTO @)!$ (2014)

You attempt to “catch up with yourself.”

Which implies a series of events/set of tasks/projected fulfillment.  I am not particularly interested in this Self, functional and representative.  I am intrigued by Another, one seduced and consumed in/between points of interest.  This is the Self that lacks coherent expression.  A Self with no space for vaulted desire and essential projection.  This is a Self annihilated by Presence, absolutely fertile (also, (one might claim), in love with American Cheese and underrated U.S. cities).

(I spent the better part of a year recoiling from “my” Life.  As much as possible, I attempted to deny the possibility of “catching up” in favor of Loss.  I sought to enhance the line between absolute focus and self destruction.  Not self destruction in the sense of a death drive.  Self destruction as a process of letting go/removing, obviating/surrendering to as many aggregates of Self as possible/necessary to discover/outline a means to Recover). 

We ask:

What can be restored?  Is there a point between desire and urgency that can be processed, wherein one might reliably “help oneself”?  Where might one seek refuge from the ubiquity of projected identity?  (READ:  digitized & networked self-hood).

(I both performed and permitted each emergent opportunity for self-experimentation/annihilation. There are many instances I wish I could take back, however you learn to be completely Present in/with these fatal events. This is absolutely necessary if you desire to Live). 

You sacrifice yourself completely to the Unknown.  You discover the essence of dreams in Trauma.  You are a different Being at every moment, because there are only moments, now that you have fully surrendered to your nature.  You are leveled.  You are sheer.  You are the process and the course of investigation, curiosity.  You turn on what you Believe and Need and thus must turn Within.  You’ve no other choice.  You are replaced.    

(I recovered my flesh; found NOISE.  While I strongly dissuade you from following this path, this much is true):  There are some of us who cannot help but love the world, all of it, even that which kills us.  We may never be satisfied. Thus, we must bind to the unbound and to each other, and there is precious little time and no undoing what has been done.  Our Way is one of tension, we do not succumb to our demons, WE LIVE THEM, WE ARE LIVED RESISTANCE.  And so we make noise.  WE MAKE NOISE.

(I left behind all I knew and believed because I resisted the prophecy of my own undoing.  I found a Life unhinged and I raced against it, for fear of living the truth of nature, of form.)  

YOU NO LONGER FEAR BECAUSE THERE IS NO LEAVING THE NOISE.  THERE IS NO LEAVING THE NOISE ONCE YOU ARE IN IT BECAUSE YOU ARE IT.  In the end WE MAKE NOISE because WE HAVE TO, because in/between THE NOISE, WE RECOVER LIFE.

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I am accepting submissions for Album Reviews/Write UPS.

How are you doing?  Are you Incarcerated? Are you comforted? Saving to buy a new Mac? I want to know what you know.  I want to explain your throat and expiate as you aspirate. I want your lungs inside my fingers.  

I want to share a very good moment with you.  Perhaps we save a turtle in the road. Perhaps we lay adjacent in the sum of impossible silence. As we do this you explain the doing, all of it, and this resonates over and over and in twenty years I give you a kidney, simply because I like you and we never had sex, leaving transplantation as the only remaining option.  

The point is I am interested in reviewing/embracing/expounding your albums, released now or behind.  This may be performed in a statistically standard fashion; an allusion to you/your ensemble as a person/entity, followed by your motives/techniques, concluding with my hopefully positive thoughts as to how the work references a larger musical dialogue and/or canonizes itself. If this bores your face off do not fret.  I will be equally happy to write with the utmost spontaneity, reflecting and inhabiting your sounds as only another musician can.  I am also equally very happy to work with you in a purely experimental context.  I will review your album as a diner menu qua soliloquy.  I will write it in Old English.  (Seriously I will learn Old English for you).  Etc.  

Spread the word for me, as I only exist in Facebook.  I will write for free.  You can use the words however you see fit.  Post them someplace, wipe your ass with them.  If the project takes off I’ll build a website dedicated to it all.   A nice one, this time no cats.  

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An Amish Family walks into an Elevator, or: How to make better Art

I am not interested in compromising, accommodating, coddling, nurturing, reciprocating, socializing, representing, conforming, comforting, consuming, commercializing, worshiping and/or otherwise marketing a single fucking thing I do.  As a result of this I give birth to myself, a lot, albeit in unexpected places.  However this is a porno for another day.  

The point will be to honestly examine your creative instincts.  What are you chanting?  On which cacophony do you feed?  How decisive is your indecision?

Perhaps, like me, you grew opposed.  Words alone do not suffice to capture the opposed opposition that makes rightness possible and so you make more art.  You make Time out of art. Faster and Faster than a Steak can moo.  

The truth is artists are everything, all the time.  They are a cultural appendectomy. Restoring function to functionless, a body neither right, wrong, nor both.  However no one can sign for this and they/you/I become pissed off because UPS is late, so now every day we make shit about the UPS shit.      

This is not a helpful thing to practice.  Intuitively, Art is a form of Suicide, not of the Artist as Subject, but of everything the Art is not; a Suicide of all that is Subjected.  The problem cancels itself out.  This is beautiful but easy to neglect, and so more often than not positions are taken that vehemently oppose all that isn’t, even though it already is, effortlessly, as you cannot undo the undone.  You paint/perform/play and/or otherwise dilate with the intention of exposing what cannot be destroyed by the opposed.  You create a threatened threat.  You know destruction is unavoidable (because avoid what?) so the final choice is accepting you’re opposing.  You make what you make and you raise a glass to the World as Diabetic Exorcism, effectively stabilizing the mutually destructive relationship.  You create the volume at which opposition is it’s own elevator music, uninterrupted, going up, and you witness, you make witnessing.  

You are trapped in an elevator.

It is easy to get stampeded in this place (the elevator), and continue violently opposing and changing directions yet never moving because you are trapped in an elevator.  

What is the Alternative?  You must approach, intensively.  Move closer and closer to the elevator you’re already inside.  Eventually; touch, taste, witness, listen, smell all over the elevator. Continue doing this for days, weeks, months on end and you will be OK because you will have become Ritual.  

We challenge the spirit (the necessity of opposition, resistance to the opposed) just short of succumbing to annihilation.  Ritual lives here.  Become it so as to practice it – an active rearranging of presence.  Whatever hellish song box the elevator corporation packaged around us over and over until we formed packaging (we are NOT packaging) cannot, under any circumstances, be Present.  

Continue presenting.  The how and why is simply possibility and interval, which always is and is indestructible in any Art that is necessary – the lived brutality of presence, which is beautiful, as you are anywhere but here and everyone is there and you are never anywhere.  The elevator breathes, expands, approaches new colors, violates light, it’s directionless, it is not feeling quite itself these days, you bang on it with spoons and sticks.  

You do not give into opposition. You become more present than it.  

The Amish are still around and you should go, some of you.

The rest of you go do shit.  The Amish are with you in spirit.

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reflections after a lobotomy

I’m not sure what happened in the first 3 months.  There was a lot of returning to experiences that represented important things that were already overplayed and thus were evermore.  There was a desire to eliminate content.  If it were possible to tap into a deadly repetition that only repeats the decay of meaning in stereo detonation, but of course it is not and so this does not work. There was poetry like this:

In a single moment / You miss missing / You miss missing missing / You miss missing missing missing / also you sneeze

The sneeze is what wakes you up. The impossibility of simultaneous
Sneezing and Sleep that soothes all living creatures

and unbearable creation.

Then there were new things that wanted to be what was but were not, and so they were tentative in a way that really only signifies the function of fear in society.  These inquiries were delicate and few and far between; late night researching of the inconclusive nature of prion diseases, composing something unemotional while feeling ill, writing what will have already been written obscured by birthright and tourism which is to say a brief interest in Russia.

Around the 4th month there was, conceivably, vacillation between spiritual awakening and existential crisis.

An intriguing symptom of this state (see: windshield wipers, rocking chairs outside of Cracker Barrel) is you eventually descend somewhere simply in-between, and that in-between turns out to be the possibility of negative redemption which is to say the Sublime. I did not quite know what to do with This.  There was intuitive bliss that came from Somewhere.  There was the sensation of being spread eagled in Antarctica.  There was an overshadowing of a life’s worth of Standard Peripheral Noise (in essence, distraction, which is to say the function of fear in society, the terror of not-being here in whatever you do, be it mathematics or eating soup).

On June 13th, 2014, I was unaware of where I was.  There was only the luxury of longing for everyone and everything and art that was once, and this was real because it could be again, and in such a way we reverse nostalgia with our tongues.  I looked at many things; I found the Art that you all made, and in a sweeping gesture kinder than vomit, maybe, the periphery grew into all-that-ever-is-to-be-read, to-be-heard, to-be-witnessed-and-observed.  This was mostly fucking great, which may well make smirking the condition of truth.

Mostly all this birthed a Ritual, which from the start felt very clean.  You plumb the depths of focus, as you must.  Maybe the ritual eventually falls a bit to the side of itself, and now it is work, but this is OK.  At some point you begin to make Art again.

At this point, most days, I don’t want to know what I know.  Not in the sense of Mind Kill but so as to practice an attention so piercing that any and all reactions, every impulse, is shrouded in immaculate consciousness, because so much of what is done is unconscious, and once you see the unconsciousness and realize the consciousness of it, you find Horror, big enough to surpass every intellectual process ever deconstructed that you think you know, and you see this Horror played out in a way that jumps from life to life all tick-like and it’s all your life, host and parasite, especially the part at the end where you paradigmatically wake up abandoned at a Food Court even though this did not actually happen because what actually did was likely more Horrific because it is the least amount of thought ever or of anything at all, least of all consciousness, which is all it could possibly be and so now what.

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