Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The skin of The Thing.

Today is the two-year anniversary of The Thing with a K.

This weekend I saw a piece by Takashi Horisaki (who, it turns out, I've met before) at the Socrates Sculpture Garden in Long Island City. By casting the interior and exterior walls of a flooded New Orleans home in latex, the artist made a record of the textures, layers of old paint, waterlogged siding, and reportedly even a fish that had come in through the window after the flood. It's a taxidermied New Orleans shotgun, skin strung up on PVC pipe, sagging with its own weight.

Made me think of Bachelard, as follows (from The Poetics of Space):
"And so, faced with the bestial hostility of the storm and the hurricane, the house's virtues of protection and resistance are transposed into human virtues. The house acquires the physical and moral energy of a human body. It braces itself to receive the downpour, it girds its loins. When forced to do so, it bends with the blast, confident that it will right itself again in time, while continuing to deny any temporary defeats. Such a house as this invites mankind to heroism of cosmic proportions. It is an instrument with which to confront the cosmos. And the metaphysical systems according to which man is "cast into the world" might mediate concretely upon the house that is cast into the hurricane, defying the anger of heaven itself. Come what may the house helps us to say: I will be an inhabitant of the world, in spite of the world."

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Purple in the sky with diamonds.

The thing about New York is, there's just not enough purple in the sky. Yesterday when I got off the train coming home after work, there was a couple standing on the platform taking a photo of the sunset, over the old Williamsburgh Savings Bank building and the bridge in the distance. I agreed with them; it looked good, but as good as it looked it still felt a little hokey, reminiscent of a million bad Christian greeting cards.

Sometimes I just miss that good old southern light, winking at you over the New Orleans rooftops, presenting itself so easily and often that it rarely seemed an occasion for a photograph (See the one exception, above).