Quiltbearing #1

Saturday, October 23, 2010

first residency opp

i have a good shot at my first artist residency - in segou. the bajidala arts center sits by the niger river, a quiet stucco building of a minimalist sensibility that could have grown up from the earth its function apparent. the memory of the place, which I visited in February, has already fueled emotional responses that are complicated - personal interwoven with political. i feel i am alternately an optimist, a realist, a dreamer, a fool and in spite of these navigations, the content of the work will make land upon its own integrity. as i squirm in the morass of my own delusions, vanities and ambitions, the work will climb out and declare itself. thank god.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Brush and Bleach on Paper on Fabric on Wood

calligraphy in acid
pen & ink on plaster
adobe tablets
base of rights
glazes of privilege
milk and lemon juice convictions
i draw with sticks
paint with crushed wood
watch my father's sparks in the garage vignette
watch my mother's unswerving placement of stones on sand happening
know my sister's duet dual dance offs lasts until today, finally
the next sketchmark
will be on my feet.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Descriptions of Segou


boiling leaves or boiling bark
staining the cotton
handwoven on looms
made elsewhere
laying on the design
laying on the bleach
drawn with soap and bleach
by beauties, generous and one-armed

meticulous. magic.

coupled with
the wind, the dust in my nose,
thirsty, the threat of water
women's work, excision and symbols of complicity
lizards like dogs come for scraps
little boys like men come for barter, for sales

flocks of blackbirds, flocks of blackbags
flocks of trees, river of soultakers
river of exhilaration, tongues and breath

mud. cloth.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

An Iranian painting on a warm gray wall.

I had completely forgotten that I had established this blog site. This is a photo of a beautiful painting by an unknown Iranian from the early 1950s. It is flanked by four photos that Phil took during his trip to Iran in 2007. Those four are bracketed by two small paintings in mosaic frames. It is the most elegant arrangement in our house. The Iranian painting appears to depict a scene from an unidentified poem and may be of a brothel or of a suitor approaching the house of his bride to be. It seems to have been painted on parchment. Some areas are in relief and there is much gilding. There is calligraphic writing in various places, but I don't know if it is to inform the images or not. The painting was a gift from a new friend at an unexpected moment and I love that he knew that I would love it.

Monday, November 23, 2009

I want

I want
to find the streets
the burial the ceremony
the gourd washed up on this shore
singing of home,

birds that crawl
orange and black, through return and relief
open sky and tired downdraft list the boat
so it can't find its bearings, its way
so its cargo slid to its other side

I want to find
the flight pattern that tells
the controller where he is
while I fly home

in santa monica there is a dune
bearded with grassy tufts
blood blasted raw in memory
of whales upended

but today i want to stand still
still still still still still still still still
on my doorstep, facing out
ready any way.


I would simply tail
the trail of my ancestors?
- no, not simple, not simple

Simply find my voice
'tween the trees they paused beside?
caught breathing freedom?

A moment later
the boat left.

Following the ancestors off their beaten path...