January 17th, 2011

Today I just want to sit somewhere quietly and read poetry.

I want to revel in absurd ideas about the universe and allow my mind to be a playground where anything can happen.

I want to forget about all those things that “need doing” for a time, and “put my ear down next to my soul” and listen to what it really wants.

I want to build something that has no function, except to turn up the corner of someone’s mouth when they least expect it.

I want to forget about all of the things in the future that seem scary or unmanageable, and just dip my toes into the infraordinary.

I want to pretend the world is full of secret hiding places that no one else can see except me.

I want to create a map of magical places and send people to them.

I want to watch the trees for signs and see what they say to me when no one else is listening.

Today I want to be an animal and run wildly in and out of the woods, stopping only to take a drink and the occasional nap.

(image: Doris Salcedo)

January 12th, 2011

My favorite working artist right now is Michael Oatman (who ironically lives and works in Troy NY, where I lived for many years and still own a house). There are pieces that he has created that make me absolutely giddy with joy. He captures something that I have tried to create with a couple of my books, where you enter into an imaginary world in which you are unsure of what is real (the book I am currently working on also falls into this category). Then you realize that you want to exist in that world where anything can happen. It’s as if a Terry Gilliam film came to life and you are walking around in it able to interact with everything. He has a new installation at the Mass Moca which I cannot wait to see. All Utopias Fell is a three-part, multimedia installation. It’s also a 1970s-era DIY satellite concocted from a vintage Airstream that just happens to have crash-landed in North Adams, Mass.

“My installations are sort of novels by a non-writer,” says Oatman. “They are stories that I want to write, but I realize that I’m not a good writer. So I use art to create a scene where you can go to the place physically where I report that things happen, but it’s up to you to put the story in its order, and there is no specific order.”

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