Wednesday, January 23, 2013

feeling a bit scatter-brained and trying to organize different unformulated thoughts -- since i got back i've been feeling chipper and just steadily working on the pelt pieces, but today woke up and felt a bit negative about the content in the work. i feel like i need to formulate somethings about it before i keep going. do i need to start another project?
i have a lot of different ideas that i know are interconnected, divided into :
knitting + knots (metaphor) / animals + skin + figure, person, clothing / environment-making, sets + vibes.

animals, skin and gathering of forms (WARNING: do not look if you have a sensitive stomach):
this week i've been working making sculptures out of the animal pelts i acquired in my hunting adventures in texas. 
interested in :
importing of african animals, non-native vs. native, killing as a sport
empty / dead / mummies / skins 
bad taxidermy / wire armatures / materials used in display of animal mummies/mounted skins (how to taxidermy?)
troubling experience of gutting / skinning / draining etc.

{iphone pictures from observing deer hunting, gutting and skinning in texas}

why was this easier to process through a camera? political problematic, gun control, animal rights questions. the pelts as a material is already so potent, so loaded, very political. and i am interested in this aspect of them, and i sit in a weird place because i am being exposed to this world where people i love dearly are killing animals for fun, and then there is the whole gutting and skinning and tanning process, in which you really learn what the animal was made of. the specificity of each animal too, each one was really alive. now negotiating how to use these things, remain sort of neutral in my treatment of them. like, i dont want the sculptures to scare people off right of the bat. i normally like to be a bit more quiet and sad about things in my work. but i talked with my sister today about overthinking, about thinking to much of the audience reception and getting blocked in your own process of making and knowing. i think i'm drawn to using this material to begin with because its confusing and its a way for me to sort out how i feel about it for myself. in working with the maps of LA i was sort of orienting myself and making abstract my new environment, i guess i am doing the same here, investigating the skin of an animal that i saw die. the person i love the most killed it. and where does my sentimental attachment to the item end and the other connotations of it begin? 

the mechanism for hanging, draining blood
collectivity / gathering / movement / dance / roads + paths / rules of their world
as an installation, animals or people as units, like in a dance
combining imagery from 2 worlds? 
office clips, chicken wire, human body deformations, body bubble ups

{1-3 Part of Dance Works III: Merce Cunningham / Rei Kawakubo; 4 Comme Des Garcons: "Body meet dress, dress meet body" S/S 1997}

{Eva Hesse's Studio, 1965-66}
knitting + knots
baromian knot: if any one ring is cut, the whole thing falls apart. this is the same with the inter-dependent knots in knitting-- one drops, then another, then another. 
idea of 'suture' in psychoanalysis, keeps coming up in my lacan seminar. they are referring to the 'cut' in identification in relation to language. i like that the lacanian idea of 'suture' has to do both with being stitched into a world of meaning and language and signs, but also simultaneously makes reference to the cut or gap that still is there. 
but realizing too that screens, interconnected networks, knots/knitting, even chicken wire (which i have been using in my pelt project) remain potent metaphors for me. we also talked about the concept of 'fort-da' (gone-there), which uses the metaphor of a child throwing a bobbin of string, illustrating the split between there and gone, the self and the object. of course freud throws in weird nipple/umbilical cord references with the string, but i was thinking more about string being line and drawing but also a way to connect, stitch up a gap. but the idea of an umbilical cord is interesting, a bodily cord that connects two people together, and nourishment passes through the cord. 
so how can i use knitting again? not that interested in making video right now. and, on top of that, i think i'm more interested in making objects that inhabit environments than creating the environment itself. 
but then again, video is such a great way to make an overwhelming thing from something really tiny. had an idea to make a weaving video, the idea of a screen (like a screen door) where things can get through it. 
traces of labor. always this is still the forefront interest. 

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