June 27, 2012

Page 127

Working with my hands thrills me immensely, apart from writing it’s the only activity that fully absorbs all my attention. The blank page in Versal ten was the perfect surface, both provocative and limiting. Using a needle, sand paper, sealing wax and hair from various specimens, including human, I set out to make my forty circles.

The day we were to gather at Megan and Shayna’s apartment, I sifted forensically through shelves and boxes in my atelier. I collect. My collection of stuff includes paper, rubber stamps, sewing kits, perfume samples, feathers, fur bits, bones and teeth, small porcelain or plastic figurines and body parts, pressed flowers, pigment, tiny cadavers, hair, etc.. I am emotionally attached to all the objects, so using them in a piece of art is a journey of loss that can only be justified by urgency.  

The blank page in Versal ten provided that urgency. I scraped its surface, stitched human and dog hair to it, burned sealing wax, glued bits of plastic, bits of cloth, bits of fur to it. Working for eight hours straight, I became familiar and intimate with page 127 and all my anxiety of irreparably marking a page in a brand new Versal, disappeared.

I developed a system, using some materials in a row, developing each circle over a few copies. My circle making station was a range of tools, consisting of matches, a leather bound vintage sewing kit complete with tiny spools of yarn, tailor scissors, glue and tape, plus all the materials. As the day progressed it became impossible to navigate through the production line that Megan and Shayna’s living room had turned into, all of us spread out with a stack of unopened golden Versals at our side. The collective energy in that room was glowing and things were done to a journal, things were done to Versal ten. If I put my forty circles next to each other they would form a narrative, but now scattered around the globe they are archival units of a collection and community.

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