Tag Archive | art

vinyl

Crow is a parrot.  Why is Crow a parrot?  To ask me regularly where I am going?  Crow is the trickster of the obelisk, never sincere, always accurate.  Crow caws for shiny things: broken nib, gold earring, my white hairs.  Crow stole me something precious to rob me of my luster.  My scrapbook recalls these things about Crow.

Hawk eyes have been spying on Crow.   Hawk wishes to be helpful to me, but is also motivated by jealousy:  Hawk is metaphysically inclined and feels that if someone is going to shape-shift, it should be Hawk.  But Hawk does not see that Hawk metaphysics are conceptualized rationally, through the lens of personality.  Hawk shape-shifts in evolution towards a true Hawk self.  Hawk is rational enough to believe that Hawk can never be anything but a more radiantly manifested Hawk.  Which is, after all, quite-something.  It is enough.

Crow, on the other hand, radiantly-manifested black, logician of the irrationally inevitable, master of minute probabilities, infinite leverager of the cosmic shuffle farce…

knows anything is possible.  Crow travels fast when looking lazy.  Crow is prone to fuzzy logic: howcome time stops where mind is light?

Crow knows.

Soaring Hawk spotted, with hawk-eyes, the rim of something hidden beneath stones.

It is a strange record of peculiar happenings.  We don’t understand them.  We detect fragments: stones, childhood, art, the self, the real.  Disappearing.  Crow is in this record.  Also a stag.  And a “he”, named Cursus.

Hawk and I call this found-arcanum “CROW MORPHOLOGY”.

crowmorph_record

Imagine you are on a boat far out at sea.  You see a large twinkling star: it could be nearby, or very far and very bright.  You sail towards it.  As you steer by its guide through the black waters of night, your boat scruffs a sandy shore.   Still the star is there.  You see nothing else.  You are stuck.  You drift…to sleep.

Wake up.  See, where the star was, a black impenetrable tower.  The star flickers in an open window.  The star is a candle fueling the work of an odalisque and her friend Hawk.  The candle heats a teapot which generates steam to turn round and round a record with a pen nib riding its groove.

You, on the shore, hear from that pen what sound?

It is very hard work.

We will incorporate the bits we can decipher here in my scrapbook.

More soon.

–The Odalisque

 

 

 

monarda didyma

Summer is here!

All winter  I imagined days so long long long I would have nothing left to do by the end of them but wait, far into the evening, for the light to finally fade.

All winter I imagined today.

Let’s stir up some spirits; spirits of evergreens, angelica, ice.   Blesséd spirits cool the hot temples.  Phoenix fire will lure the fire-flies to the obelisk;  I look forward to the show.  Black Swan is undoubtedly bringing me a beak-full of beebalm, little red firecrackers just for me.   Hawk is hoping to celebrate the solstice with a squirrel.  Well, not exactly “with”: the squirrel won’t be celebrating.  Hawk promises me the tail–I am supposed to wear it somehow.  I don’t want a squirrel tail but Hawk doesn’t listen.

Owl, who knows everything I think and feel, promises to swallow the tail when Hawk, drowsy full with squirrel not-tail, falls asleep.

Owl, oh owl, the-one-who-fills-in.  Owl dreams of newborn spring rabbits, velvety soft sausages wriggling through an Owl esophagus.

Dinner can be pretty disgusting around here. It’s not my fault: I only eat art, mostly painted by dutch masters.  Very civilized I am, dining nightly on lustrous silver, pewter and crystal.

Black Swan floats upon the table, neatly munching duckweed.

But tonight!  Beyond spirits, a fast.  I will break-fast tomorrow, perhaps on a Manet bun.

Yes.  I will have a Manet bun.

I can make tea from the beebalm leaves, without disturbing the flowers.

They are a favorite flower.

 

 

icy spirits

The days only get shorter from here but let’s not think about that now.  It will be warm for some time yet.

Happy Summer Solstice!

–The Odalisque

PS:  Crow is hopefully being crow, not parrot, off performing his own rituals.  Crow-as-crow, upon a heap of stones.

The starlings are raising their nestlings.  Lots of little mouths practically an insecticide fumigating the marsh.

 

spring is coming

Ah, Bacchanal!

Spring is coming!

There are no birds in this picture.  Saturn and his wise centaurs.  All a-flutter and creepy-crawly.  Floriferous, sword in scabbard and spear.

Rummaging through loose papers to find out where on earth/in space I found that face!  Faces are unusual in my scrapbook!  Here’s the only other one I can think of.  It’s from my favorite movie.

Are you bringing me flowers?  I like flowers.  Particularly the ones that open themselves so fully they fall apart.  Hearts do this, and the ego, yearning for transcendence.   So, too, the prismatic doors of glass, with no hinges and no handle.  You (yes you) must crash through.  Oh the light, smashing everywhere and glass shattering like a fist smashed into still water drops like glass throwing light.

My favorite flower, the petals dropleted with moisture, shatters on the sill.

Wait, just a little bit.  I will make you a bouquet.

–The Odalisque

fig. 1158 (flaming valentine)

I have nothing to say but I do have a valentine.

pleasure to/hearth

fig. 1158: pleasure to/hearth

Last year’s valentine was my most popular post!  It was full of ruins.  This one has a hearth, which they say is the center of a home.

I hope you like this one, too, even though I don’t have much to say about it.

Here’s something someone else said:

if what we could–were what we would–
criterion–be small–
it is the ultimate of talk–
the impotence to tell–

(emily dickinson)

It doesn’t matter what we say.  It matters what we do.

Do something good.

–The Odalisque

door_lion_arrows

Henriette has a job

Finally a letter from Henriette!  (Read the last one here.)

Dear Odalisque,

Thank you for your invitation to visit.  I have never been in an obelisk, and ah! the aeons since I last saw an ocean, don’t remind me of them, unless I may count the flat deserts that were sea floors.  I stood at the bottom of those oceans and drowned myself in a fire-dry sky.  Then, I was much happier.  When night came, the stars were very friendly, a school of bio-luminescent fish curious about me in my glass bowl.

I have been very busy since October, when the Christmas season began in Venezuela.  I have taken a position in the new Ministry of Supreme Happiness.  I’ve enclosed a snapshot of this position: does it o’erwhelm you with exalted felicity?  So it intends.  The shovel intends to remind you that Chavez now hangs out with the people underground.   Not in the grave, but in tunnels.  Perhaps you’d like to dig yourself one, to reconnoiter with le President?  Reports vary as to whether he is still a bird.

When I die (do odaliques ever get to die?)  I will return, not as a bird, but as a wolf.

Don’t tell your friends. 

Did you ever think you’d see an odalisque draped in blue, blue of Mary’s color?

Hello to the birds, says wolf, salivating.

love & toilet paper,

Henriette

henriette felicidad

Dear Henriette,

Congratulations on your new position!  Will you get a day off?

The birds say they know a very fancy song called Peter and the Birds.  The birds, assisted by Peter, trap a wolf.  The wolf winds up in a zoo.

But don’t worry.  I’m no Peter.  And in their song, the wolf manages to eat one bird…duck, I think?

Black swan (who most resembles a duck) says he doesn’t remember anything about that.

I asked the birds if odalisques die.  Phoenix got very excited and tried to turn my scrapbook into a pyre.  The rest of us aren’t sure.  Owl points out that we’re art.  Black swan believes we are therefore immortal.  Hawk suspects we can die, but we’ll be created at another time in a new, more relevant form.  Hawk sees no reason why that form couldn’t be a wolf, so that should please you.  Crow (did I tell you crow turned into a parrot?) says “all all perishes.” All, I suppose, includes odalisques, and even the impulse towards art.

I can’t find the starlings, not that it matters as they don’t seem to think actual thoughts.  They are feeding on and fertilizing some forsaken marsh.

Mary!  How’d you wind up with her coat?  Sacre Couer!  An odalisque, in Mary’s coat?!  What’s she wearing?  Have you seen her?

Will we see you soon?

your friend,

The Odalisque

henriette_staghorn_qtrsz1_suprhappy

And now I have to wait and wait, for another missive from Henriette.

home [page]

figure (anamorphosis) was my 100th scrapbook page!  One hundred is a special number because I have ten fingers and a hundred is ten to the second power.  I will have to publish 1,000 pages before I reach another power of ten.

post100_1000One thousand scrapbook pages!  Taped in a line on the walls…or bound into a book?  A record of the evolution of someone called “I”?…or ever-more intimate layers, papery tissues, peeled off with each page turn?  If the pages only reveal what was always there, what will be unveiled when the last obfuscation is lifted, the last page turned?

A funny endpaper, the edging of a book.  The knobby surface of my old desk, slid up beneath the window of the obelisk.   For you…a still, illuminated screen?  What lingers in the mind as our eyes lift to the view…who will sit, unveiled, in our thoughts, perplexing and welcome, when the scrapbook is at last closed?

centenary invitation

www.conversewithbirds.org

Now Featuring

post100_aslideshow

of my favorite pictures

AND

post100_aboutmeandmyscrapbook

where you

post100_youyesyou

can read an odalisque primer, hear my dreams, watch my movie, and browse some of my favorite pages from each obelisk year.

All this, and we are not even finished with year 2.

handwriting_thankyouforlooking

–The Odalisque

FED

fig 1.folio:816.

fabricated odalisque

fabricated odalisque

[I make figures to illustrate complex concepts.   See all here.]

odalisques in space

Last week the owl posted my dream about outer-space:  click to listen.  We’ve been talking a lot about space here in the obelisk.  The birds think I am too sheltered.  They nag me to go to the shore.  I  distracted them with hats, but fashion bores birds as quickly as it does people (I’m so glad I don’t wear clothes!), so I’ve devised a new strategy…I am regaling them with tales of outer-space.

Little did the birds know of heights that are not sunny or blue!  Of regions too vacuous for sheltering clouds!  Of volumes so vast our sun–which could hold one million earths–is but a miniscule, ordinary prick of light!   Little did they know that odalisques in ships of the imagination can zoom far beyond the flight of birds, into outer-space!

It is my favorite place to go when things get rough for me here on earth.

astrolisque

astrolisque

I tell the birds of strange  phenomenon: impotent white giants, doomed red dwarves…

A star's spectacular death in the constellation Taurus was observed on Earth as the supernova of 1054 A.D. Now, almost a thousand years later, a superdense neutron star left behind by the stellar death is spewing out a blizzard of extremely high-energy pa

crab nebula shooting x-rays

I have not yet told them about the dangerously attractive black holes:

Black holes are one of the most intriguing and mysterious of all astrophysical phenomena.  while astrophysical theory has long supported the existence of black holes, it has been hard to fathom an object that is so incredibly dense that nothing, not even light itself, can escape its grasp.

Black holes are intense and powerfully attractive.   It is good astrolisque practice to steer clear of them.  This can be difficult as black holes are invisible.  Mere light-seconds after you feel an intense attraction towards nothingness, you find yourself spiraling towards an oppressive, inescapable doom.  The savvy astrolisque must be wary:

How does one go about locating an object that can’t be directly observed?…this can be accomplished by observing the effects that a black hole has on its surroundings.

Whenever you see a celestial object moving in an odd way…beware!  It is probably under the influence of an invisible black hole!  This celestial object was moving fast enough to not fall in…but you may not be so lucky!  Nor do you want its fate to befall you:  aeons in perturbed orbit around an obliterating absence?  No astrolisque desires sinister stasis!

There’s nothing an astrolisque can do about a gravitational field that overwhelms all other forces in the universe, funneling space-time into its own interminable darkness.   There is nothing an astrolisque can do about astronomical facts.

But she can use astronomical facts to her advantage.  Basic physics tells us that an astrolisque traveling with enough speed through the cosmos will never ever be trapped by a black hole.  The astrolisque must prepare herself for space travel with a lightening quick imagination.  She must craft her coat to spirit her swiftly on breezes of suggestive thought.

What happens if an astrolisque is sucked into a black hole?  Time drags.  The astrolisque’s bottom is stretched out of proportion to her head, at least until she reaches the black hole’s interior singularity–a volume-less place of infinite density, where time ceases and she is squashed into one dull dimension.

Beyond the singularity, results vary.  One astrolisque came-to in an alternate saddle-shaped topology in which she was saddled with a mini-van, 2.5 kids, and a closet of unending despair.  Another astrolisque resurfaced in an inverse universe where everything switched sign: her positives became negatives, and vice-versa, causing an crisis of morality which could only be resolved by quaffing moonshine.  Another  leapt into black hole after black hole, each time desperately hoping things would turn out different.  He eventually became a black hole himself.

These are your average black holes.  But there are super-massive black holes that are not sinisterly invisible…they emit tremendous amounts of energy and light (including radio waves, which I pick up in my sleep).  They are the brightest objects in the universe.

artist-s rendition of an optically violent variable quasar, with nearby astrolisque

artist rendering of a quasar, with nearby astrolisque

I’ll talk more about quasi-stellar radio sources some other time.

These tales discombobulate the birds.  Their spirits are dampened, and they can’t soar carefreely through the sky.  They are afraid their wings will carry them through some unseen membrane of blue, into inhospitable outer-space.

I assure them that they can’t possibly fly that high…they would soon suffocate from a lack of oxygen and fall back down to earth.

This does not comfort them.

Astronomical facts are not for everyone.

–The Odalisque

Black hole quotes here.
Space images from NASA.gov

why does the phoenix (billet 4)

a candle in my ear burned down to ash.  wake up.  eyelashes caked with ash.   head thick with smoke. obscure.

o reader

o out-there

here:

fig. 6:  astrolabe/the stairs

figure 6: the stairs

(the phoenix leaves flaming notes on my pillow.  Click to read the last billet doux…)

there are no words left.

it doesn’t matter what you say.

it matters what you do.

what will you do?

performance art

Though I spent my formative years as an art object, I’ve always wanted to be an artist.

I like to be looked at so I decided that my first artistic project would be myself.

I have concluded, based on the information that Owl brings, that I must, therefore, be a PERFORMANCE ARTIST.    My performances are primarily observed by birds; you, fair readers, witness my documentation of the event, via my scrapbook.   The performance artist, Marina Abramovic, lived behind a glass wall for public viewing, and writes that the energy of the audience helped sustain her through the ascetic, ritualized ordeal.   I have to sustain myself through my life without an audience, drawing energy from other sources.

The record of my performance is, in the tradition of the odalisque (rather than the whore), not promoted.  It lies here, awaiting you, who might be interested in me.  Maybe I am a CONCEPTUAL performance artist since my scrapbook stimulates an idea of me, my life, in your mind.

The definition of  performance artist observes that we typically come from varied disciplinary backgrounds.  My background hasn’t varied much; it’s usually exotic and luxe, though I have been reduced to a line upon a flat field of color.  Usually, my background suggests an interior, like the obelisk.  Generally, the interior exists only to couch my nakedness, the hushed lustre of my body with its inviting apparency.

I might be a multi-disciplinary performance artist.  Like the movies I watch, my work exists in two dimensions + time.   My life doesn’t move as fast as movie film, but, then again, I have lasted for more than two hours.  I work with several types of imagery–visual and textual.   Plus, according to the birds, my dreams are all in sound.

The birds are not convinced by all this.  They feel they are important, independent aspects of my life, which means I might not be a performance artist, but a character in a play.

They are my existential dilemma.

They say there is no existential dilemma because this is not a play.  They are wildly interested in FOOD, FASHION and FUN.  They have asked me to post more on those topics, which were so popular last summer.  They want me to leave the obelisk and go hang out on the shore.    Ok, Ok, I say, but what does a work of art DO on the sea shore?  Every time I go out there, I’m assaulted by sirens and nereids, phantom ships shooting fireworks and giant seashells whose glossy interiors sigh sad circular themes, stuffing my heart full of feelings, padding the perfect punching bag.

Black Swan says, “Put on a bathing suit!”

Hawk says, “Take a sandwich!”

The starlings make a giant beach ball in the sky and spin like a celestial globe.

Phoenix found me on the shore (see my movie), and doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about.  Obelisk, sea shore, o’er the hills, any place has fuel to burn.  Crow-as-Parrot still says nothing but “Where are you going?”  (shut up Crow!).

If I put on a bathing suit and packed a sandwich, if I hung out on the beach and caught some rays, would the sirens go away?  Would the seashells consent to being silent souvenirs?  Would the ship sail back to shore with treasure to share?  Would the nereids turn out to just be bait, the sirens the wiry hang-overs of a half-starved, worn-out crew?

When I ran from my former life as a decadent odalisque, I imagined being anything, anything native to the shore…not cheap toxic trash or the phantasmagoria of some sailor’s mind…I wanted to be real.

REGARD ME:

multi-media odalisque

multi-disciplinary-conceptual-performance-artist Odalisque

%d bloggers like this: