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2021.04.23

05 photographs

04 walking

… sunny, cold, still breezy enough that the sun doesn’t warm much… birds singing, chortling, making the various sounds they make, i recognize redwing black birds… Melissa Febos has given me the practice of modules, routines, disciplines, rituals, the day is good if four or more are pracriced… walking is the fourth module of the day, do i add some time for meditation later?… laughter, a man and woman walk by behind me, i don’t turn to look, only listen, it is the woman who laughs from the chest into the throat, a warm laugh, she is fond of her companion…

… the sound of horns in the distance, a train?, a boat?… i am sitting at an overlook point, the estuary1 that mediates the connection of Fishkill Creek to the Hudson River is down below…

… twittering of birds interspersed with a high pitched plunk plunk, i turn to look, tiny black and gray birds, courtship, four of them, two males, two females, it is the males that make the plunk sounds while spreading their wing feathers… there are two females, two males, the males are interested in only one of the females…

03 my Feedly feed

assembly.art

… an article on Assembly, a new gallery/representation/support platform for photographic artists… it purports to support artists and help them bring together the variety of streams of income they must pursue to support themselves… a good idea, can i participate?, it seems you have to be already up there in the photographic arts world, their roster is currently 10 photographers with substantial pedigrees…

… this image captures my attention:

© Poulomi Basu
© Poulomi Basu

… a beautiful young woman soldier… i try to unpack what it is that interests me… there is the male gaze… there is the contradiction of femininity and masculinity (woman and the tools and uniform of war), the idea of woman as action figure… there is the thought that this beautiful body might be maimed, violently extinguished and something erotic about that… does she look a little concerned?…

Tomaso Clavarino, another artist turning his lockdown into a slow down and observe the details kind of photo series… the tidal wave of artists sharing their covid projects… other than photographing the impromptu handmade signs around town during my morning walks, i had no true covid project… i did as i always do, i got up early, read, went for a walk, took pictures and thought while i walked… the pictures shown here are good pictures, distinguished by choice of processing, they are the kind of pictures I take, the odd moments in the landscape, near and far, the details, that we now observe because we have been forced to limit our bodies and our minds to just our immediate bubble surroundings… an example:

Tomaso Clavarino
Tomaso Clavarino

… interestingly, the book contains line drawings by Patrizio Anastasi that are responses to the photographs on the facing pages:

… the book is Ballad of Woods and Wounds… published by studiofaganel… if i had not just spent money on the Gerry Johansson book, i might have bought this one… it looks good…

… Michèle Bygodt… very interesting set of (self?) portraits exploring the scientific concept of “black bodies,” they (preferred pronoun) explain that:

‘Gnoul’, also translated as ‘body’ in English from the Fang language of Gabon, consists of a series of black and white images that question the term ‘Black bodies’, often used by scientists or media to refer to Black people. The term ‘body’ to mean ‘people’ is used to identify a group of human beings in a specific social and economical context who have been or are being treated as objects.

In this photographic project, I question its usage, how it in fact reproduces the objectification that it is supposed to be identifying, and the Authority hidden behind it.2

… a striking project…

an article about Naomi Rosenblum, historian, author, educator and curator… A World History of Photography and A History of Women Photographers are two books she published…

02 i read a book

Catcalling, Lee Soho

… a book of poems about the experience of being woman in Korean society… it is a translation, i like the way it feels in English, but wonder what is lost in the translation…

… the first poem is Cohabitation… it seems to be about killing her little sister, are we to take it literally, or did she metaphorically kill a part of herself?… i suspect the latter… would she be free to write this poem and publish it if it were the former?… another thought occurs, she has made a suicide attempt… “I slit little sister’s wrist for her” she writes…

… reading poems is a very different kind of reading… one has to absorb them, try to understand what the poet means, poetry is both precise and vague, it implies a great deal, does not seek to speak facts so much as relationship to facts…

… Day Without Reduction… a poem about cooking and eating monkfish?… moldy monkfish… i have eaten monkfish, i wonder if monkfish has special significance in Korean culture… i google “monkfish Korea” and learn that it was not traditionally eaten because it is an ugly fish… presently it is very popular as a spicy stew made with beansprouts and other things… the fish is usually cooked bone in, skin on, but the recipe advises fillets are fine too… the poem is a mother daughter poem, she recalls her mother’s tenderness?…

… Fearing the Gaze of Strangers We … Each Other, the author explains that her sister(?) Sijin beat her with a frying pan, which led to printing this poem in double vision style, the pan beating having given her temporary double vision…

… there is a trend around violence of the younger sister towards the author…

01 Self

232.4 lbs

… i was headed in a good direction on the weight front, and then i was not… not sure what happened… water weight… too much salt?…

… i always start with self in the morning… a survey i suppose… there isn’t often much to report, or do i not do the work to dig down… hard to say… i don’t give myself that much time before moving on to reading… perhaps i should linger a little longer over self…

… my pee is burning the tip of my penis as it exits… what’s that about?…

… i sit here, staring at the screen, wondering what else to say… the computer whirs quietly, i notice a very slight signal tone in my ears…

… as the coffee water is heating up i read an article on directed energy attacks, the weird Havana Syndrome, that the Russians might be behind, or the Chinese… i also read Heather Cox Richardson, who writes about the struggle for power in this country, the effort to bring DC into statehood, the Republican howling over what they view as rigging of the system against them by Democrats, a taste of their own medicine HCR points out… they don’t like it unless they are the ones doing it… the one comforting point she makes is that its happened before in the past, in more egregious ways… i worry about this power struggle because the outcome is not assured and i consider it possible that we will become an Oligarchic or Authoritarian state… we came close with 45…

… i am struggling lately to do simple things… ask that our taxes be mailed to us… make sure i have paid the utility bill for the month… order the new storm door… i tell H this is because i am concerned about money, which is true… not sure it completely explains my stuckness…

… on Monday i can consider myself fully vaccinated, H too… i am telling myself i need to schedule routine doctors appointments and lab work… i try to frame it in my mind that i am taking care of myself… my fear of actually being sick is battling for the upper hand, the Democrat and Republican sides of my brain at war…

… i pee again and it burns less, i am wondering about the Monterey Jack with jalapeños, habaneros and ghost peppers…

  1. From https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/estuary.html I learn that the broad definition of estuary is a zone where water of different chemical compositions intermixes as one flows into the other. It is also subject to tidal action. This applies to Fishkill Creek because the Hudson is partially salt water all the way up to Poughkeepsie and Fishkill Creek is fresh water.
  2. Emerald Arguelles, aint-bad https://www.aint-bad.com/article/2021/04/22/michele-bygodt/

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