The year 2018 has been one that I think many of us identify as “one to remember”. This might be for good reasons or bad reasons or a mixture of both– I think I’ve had a tsunami of both this year. The events of the year parallel much of the art I am also seeing around me, as well as the general tenor of expression I feel in the world as I move around.
I am reading more and more all the time. I fill all kinds of gaps of time with reading. I carry at least 8-10 books with me right now- I am fully shielded from the world, armed to the teeth with strange findings from 1$ book bins wherever I find myself these days.
When I was in NYC, I loved getting to Port Authority and seeing a gallery on the main floor, full of interesting and colorful sculptures- they were candies! The French artist, Laurence Jenkell, wasn’t allowed to have candy while growing up– leave it to NYC to lift my spirits with such fun– a toddler came in and hugged one, getting a gentle scolding from the gallerist. I am that toddler.
Crossroads of the World – Laurence Jenkell, NYC Exhibition 2018
Also while in NYC, I got to see a play about Emily Dickinson called Because I Could Not Stop, which I enjoyed very much but many left during the intermission. I am not quite sure what they expected, but I thought this play was much more insightful than the movie I saw on Netflix that I found straight up offensive. Emily Dickinson is such a complicated person (aren’t we all?) and her representations are often so unimaginative and reductive– in this play, the whole thing was her reading poems and quotes and pieces of letters. It was a one-woman show, accompanied by a cello, two violins a piano and an opera singer. She sang some of Emily’s poems which was one of the coolest fusions of poetry/music I think I’ve ever seen (though I am not expert in such matters, Teri!).
I also visited the International Photography Museum and the New Museum. At the New Museum, there were so many wonderful pieces- I will just post a few.
New Museum, NYC, October 2018
Here are a few of my favorites from the International Photog Museum:
International Photography Museum, October 2018
I was so happy to spend time with K walking around the city, enjoying where I feel most at ease- most Possible to be myself. There is still pain in NYC for me- I see a lot of apathy due to the speed with which the world turns there. It is hard, but seeing artistic expression is one of the treatments I find myself drawn to in these difficult times.
As soon as I left NYC, I returned and headed to a writers retreat in Big Sur, Calif. I did not plan for such a jam-packed month but our NYC trip was born out of my brother’s new engagement so we just had to make the most of it!
In Big Sur, I visited the Henry Miller Library and stayed at Esalen for 3 days. I wrote a lot and generally stayed to myself, though by the end I had made a handful of connections. I had signed up for the retreat 8 months ago and had thought it would be a great way to meet other writers, but by the time I got there the last thing I wanted to do was talk about writing- I only wanted to be alone and do this mysterious thing that people talk about called writing. Also, I spent some hours in this mysterious place they call hot springs. I write when I’m not reading. What changes is the ratio of reading:writing. Thinking is in there too from time to time.
Here are some photos from my time at the coast. I am so lucky to have the Possibility to divide my time between some amazing places.
Henry Miller Library, Big Sur, Calif. October 2018
Esalen, Big Sur, Calif. October 2018
Lastly, here is a photo from a language encyclopedia I am carrying around. A good workout and informative:
I hope you all are doing well. I will post again about some other art I have been interacting with this fall- would love to see what you are all up to!