Each on his rock transfixed, the sport and prey
Or racking whirlwinds, or for ever sunk
Under yon boiling ocean, wrapt in chains,
Unrespited, unpitied, unreprieved,
Ages of hopeless end? This would be worse.
“you’ve been here for miles
What did you see”?
The stone speaks
The sky has been falling
Ice on the tips of your fingers
as you tap the table
I’m hoping for a drink.
A line from here to there
Can’t you find a way? You’re so hard to follow.
So much time to cover so many things
I thought you’d say you are in this too.
Can’t you find a way?
I want everything
I’ve been talking about you to myself
A mind not to be changed by place or time
The mind is its own place, and in itself.
O’er many a frozen, many a fiery mount
Rocks, caves, lakes, fens, bogs, dens, and shades of death – where all life dies, death lives, and nature breeds.
Without dimensions; where length, breadth, and height
And time, and place, are lost.
Steep, straight, rough, dense
With hands, head, wings, or feet, pursues their way
And swims, or sinks, or wades, or creeps, or flies
Of stunning sounds, and voices all confused
Borne through the hollow dark, assaults her ear
With loudest vehemence.
Which way the nearest coast of darkness lies
Bordering on light (which is my present journey)
I thought all this would work out after a while.
Sleeping for miles.
to be continued
There* Russell Glacier is a glacier in the Qeqqata municipality in central-western Greenland. It flows from the Greenland ice sheet in the western direction. The front of the glacier is located 25 km east of Kangerlussuaq.
Also, The Solovky Archepelago Russia, Eidsland, Norway, Sheffield,UK and Paradise lost, a book by Milton
Is not creative practice a place to create new relationships between things, with new relationships that previously didn't exist, where you find a form for things to be in dialogue?
Dialogue #1 28th August
Let’s start with Stones – fragments of geology – that mark the compression of time and place. As they enter a collection, are put in a pocket, or set on a shelf with other found stones, they speak of memories and of displacement, and of their own silence – of exile. SB/JH
One stone one day, one name at a time. JS
I always come back to the mountains. LL
The idea of this physical material thing standing there, for years and years, creating dialogues, the idea of it is like the truth even if it never happened. DH
There are currently 17 stones on my mind. SM
whose - are we talking about?
belonging, occupation, marginality,
3873 steps walking West to East – along Great Western Road, Glasgow – via Paradise to Damascus Gate and Levant Pies
There are currently 17 stones on my mind, 5 Sept. 2020
The first 16 are sucking stones belonging to Samuel Beckett's character Molloy, which circulate around Molloy’s four pockets (two in his greatcoat and two in his trousers) and mouth until eventually they are lost, thrown away, gifted or swallowed.
The 17th stone is The Lochmaben Stone, a megalith standing in a field, on the farm of Old Graitney in Dumfries and Galloway on the Scottish / English border, in Scotland. The area is also known as Stormont. Together with a smaller stone it is all that is left of a stone circle dating back to around 3000BC.
The principal stone or megalith has, in the Borders context, an unsurpassed extent of history attached to it. It is an erratic, 7 feet high and 18 feet in girth and weighs approximately ten tons. It is composed of weathered granite, exposed to severe glacial action.
It was frequently used as the meeting place between the Scots and English wardens for the administration of justice, and in comparatively recent times local gatherings took place at this stone.
There are currently 19 stones on my mind, 18 Sept. 2020
The 18th and 19th stones are small amber gypsum crystals collected from the edges of the Holy well in Cranfield, N. Ireland. These two small crystals have been in my purse for the past 25 years – originally there were four but I ate two.
Homi K Bhabha on the “Unprepared”
Bhabha in conversation about the concept of ‘the unprepared’ with University of Glasgow’s Dr Sourit Bhattacharya.
Programmed by the University of Glasgow Creative Writing Programme, Thursday 1st Oct. 2020, Zoom event.
So CCFT что делать as Lenin famously said
"what to do"?
whats next with our dialogue and process,
we have the questions
what is our process and method in the dialogue?
• Vienna: 2nd November. Four killed 'in cold blood' and many wounded in the City's streets by a lone gun-man.
• 12th November: Ethnic Armenians flee terrotories in Nagorno-Karabash - stripping houses of their possessions before burning some to the ground.
• Guatamala: 5th November. Scores of people buried under rivers of mud unleashed by torrential rain.
• 28th November: Swans affected by a strain of Avian Flu - spinning in circles and discharging blood.
• Earthquake, Izmir: 3rd November: Today, a 4 year old girl, Ayda, was pulled alive from the rubble after being buried for 91 hours.
Are these not just the residue of words used by and for ‘white’ identity politics? Post colonial – post religion?
Does it feels too easy, to use them now and to assume we all know what we mean by using them?
Do we need other words - or really work at what they mean to us?
It just struck me looking at them that they seemed like very 'trendy' 'arty' 'buzz' words at the moment - the ethics of their meaning and real implications wrapped up in 'soft/lite' curatorial language.
My own view is to avoid any generic assumed understanding - that conflicts and have very specific meanings within each of their fields in social science and cultural studies. It feels like a danger we use appropriated ‘non-sense’ meanings - that we are all really trying to avoid. Is there a way to use them now in a much more specific way, or mess the meanings up to try and avoid the danger of falling into very particular white politics and the ethics of seeing, looking at and talking about others?
... a kiss now might break the spell
an embrace might enfold the longing
a sign might give direction
in this haze of unknowing
• Earthquake, Izmir, 1st November. A 70 year old man pulled alive from the rubble after being buried for 33 hours.
On-line Nomadic Dialogue: A possible end . . .
TEMPORARY LINE, An Atlas – Famagusta
Drawn by Yiorgos Hadjichristou, July 2017
Filmed by Shauna McMullan.
I died as a mineral and appeared as a plant,
I died as a plant and reached the animal stage,
I died from the animaldom and became a human being –
Why, then, should I fear? When did I become less by dying?
Seeing Ana’s image of Luds Church reminded both of us of an extraordinary place of pilgrimage that we visited in 2018. For family reasons, we found ourselves in Auberterre-sur-Dronne, in the SW of France. There we stumbled upon L’Église Souterraine Saint-Jean – a church carved out of a rock cliff over a period of a century by Benedictine monks.
Apparently, it is the largest subterranean church in Europe. It’s an amazing piece of carving – or, rather, excavation – from living rock. The highest point in the main chamber – the nave – is 20 metres, with a gallery extending above it from which we could view the whole space and look down onto a replica of the Holy Sepulchre carved, in situ, out of a single piece of rock. The C12th landowner who occupied the castle built on top of the stone bluff from which the church was carved had evidently made the pilgrimage to Jerusalem himself; probably as part of the Crusades. His way into the church was through the surface of the earth, into the upper tunnels that gave access to the galleries and steps down into the body of the church.
It’s other extraordinary feature were the 80 grave openings or sarcophagi carved into the floor of the church entrance at street level. They had been the final resting place of many of the pilgrims who never quite made it as far as Santiago de Compostella. L’Église Souterraine Saint-Jean is one of the stopping points along one of the pilgrim routes, and pilgrims entering the church would walk over the graves of the dead, enacting a metaphorical or metaphysical journey: crossing from the world of the everyday into the liminal space between life and death.
... 'we’re afraid of everyone' that's John Lennon's 'Isolation'
our isolation makes of us
…glowing with imagination' that's Mary Shelley's 'The Last Man's'
the compass on the window sill
talks to the magnetic north
the thin skin of pond ice speaks of the cold
Silloth across the water, Maryport away to the west
it makes me think of 'touchless technologies' and what this means now, as we speak, and our relationships to touch and proximity.
• 24th November: Donald Trump admits members of the incoming Democratic administration into the While House. A chink, finally, in Trump's obstructions and state of obdurate denial.
Hering conceives memory as a fundamental property of reproduction of organic beings. The nervous substance of any organism retains the traces of its experiences and hands them down as an inheritance to the following generations, just as we received in its turn a certain amount of traces from the previous generations.
• 28th November: Black music producer severely beaten up by Paris Police - their brutality caught on video.
And when we decide it should not be here for ever; it totally changes my relationship to the site. Is it not an illusion, anyway, that something lasts for ever?
So why do I think of your rat story when I make this walk? Well, I guess, it is because this is one of those areas where the likelihood of encountering a rat is pretty high. This path lies within the bounds of the urban but it, like the rat – so often vilified – is a marginal land, a brown site, a wasteland or terrain vague – seemingly of little commercial or aesthetic use. Like this stretch of landscape, let’s call it that, the brown rat (rattus norvegicus) or common rat – also known as the Hanover rat, Norwegian rat, Persian rat, street rat, sewer rat, wharf rat – is perceived to be of little value. Yet, it is a magnificent survivor and adaptor. Keeping its options open to all shifts of circumstance, and exploiting any environmental openings. The rat’s territory, originally the plains of northern China and Mongolia, seems to have expanded in direct relation to our nomadic journeys and our settlement, to cover a wide range of habitats and countries. They are here, unseen and unheard, besides the Kelvin.
The feral can, and does, like the rat, infiltrate the smallest of places, and by so doing it slants things: making of them a questioning blemish amidst the relative order of urban or civil occupation. Architects have coined the phrase terrain vague to corral these feralscraps of landscape as marginal spaces at odds with the cultivation of order and meaning: significant localities that problematise the urban, make it dynamic, give it another more vertiginous breath.
where did it all go
rabbits down a hole
memories we used to carry like baskets of gold
I leave my mark on this stone
We have begun to wonder if the actual word we are searching for is feral. Feral like the rat, that turns and bares its teeth when cornered, while preferring to move in the shadows and at the periphery of things: living in that realm where John Berger’s storyteller’s words met the darkness behind them and their audience. An infinitely fine line of interaction and enactment, where the word’s alterity becomes wonderfully apparent, and returns to an unknowable silence from which it was drawn on the speaker’s breath. A perilous space where the sensorium communis (agreed consensus) of meaning is disrupted, and shaken from its state of convenient stasis to become again a nomadic and fluid thing – it like the rat, becomes a trickster-like presence …
shrouded in a rare serene stillness, undermined by the decaying presence of the ghosts of historical violence, a sudden and significant shift in my individual and shared understanding about the world I’m in……. particular how my knowledge, had built up, constructed and imagined was not at all what I experienced.
The oscillating situation of apprehension and comprehension, the instability of miss reading and miss understanding opened up instability and now our current COV-19 world, knowledge is by definition very unstable and not fixed, also increasingly defined by being remote – distance, proximity, mobility are not what they were to me……can we travel there again or do we then re-imagine and re-shape what we started? a microcosm of inter-related history, cultural metaphor, motifs and shared concerns now ‘remote’ - distant in time - memory, or by definition remote from once familiar everyday experience, we are now distantly related…….in a variety of representational forms - complex relationships of personal immediacy remotely?
– remote – the idea of a place - distant. What does distance and proximity mean now, is touch – our feet on the ground, caress and physical proximity - now the new distance and what does our dependency on a variety of electronic devices create - remote devices for knowledge production and exchange - operating or operated at a distance? representations and artefacts as responsive critical frictions ‘image saturated’ culture, read disposable and forgettable, erasure and remembering, moments of displacement, white christian identity politics, belonging and the ghosts of historical violence.
representation and remembering as a thing in itself, changing material relationship, the act of reading images, how they perform and the ethical concerns of representation between related worlds…..
“I make the history of colonialism part of my history in the only way I know,” Pia Arke once wrote, “namely by taking it personally.”
• Glasgow, 27th October 2020. Today, news has broken that a young family from Iran have drowned off the coast of Dunkirk. They were trying to make their way to the UK to find a better life. I don’t know what to say.
emptied out houses
their stillness disturbed just now
by the footfall of a soldier
and his challenge out of the dark
“It’s dangerous to go further into the Dead Zone!”
“Because it is the Dead Zone!”
Dead Zone dead Nekros (as in dead person)
the only word I could
a word – a name, in fact – ricocheting back to me
from my past, the name adopted by a sad
romantic nihilist student about the age of
this National Guardsman,
the friend of a friend,
could be in his sixties now if he lived
CCFT On-Line Dialogue with Jenny Brownrigg, Director of Exhibitions, Glasgow School of Art
Friday 20th November 2020
YH The Kolumba Art Museum in Cologne, Germany/ encased+ embodied the St. Kolumba Church, 22 August 2020.
The ‘rock’ attains new meanings in our cities and our lives. While keeping its ‘solid’ characteristics could claim a PLACE in the Immaterial world.
AS Lud’s Church: in the middle of nowhere, a meeting point for those looking for the sacred during the pilgrimage, the dialogue with the anonymous rambler, the discovery of nature.
The river runs its course at the centre of my vision, framed by beeches and oaks. I breathe in the dampness of the air, as I shape this vignette in my notebook with lines and words: each solitary thing named, and each signifying a word conjoined with others – for a while at least – to run their course and evaporate as I breathe them into the evening’s liquid stillness. The First Nation American poet, Natalie Diaz, likened her, and her people’s relation with the Colorado River in the terms of: ‘the river runs through the middle of my body.’ (From: The first water is the body (2020).) She and the river inseparable, the one embodied in the other as a body and a culture. I can’t experience my relationship with this river or the natural world with that same intensity of connection, I wish I could, but I can experience my liquid self – the moisture that makes up much of my body – in each word as it leaves my mouth to deposit its fine fog of condensation on my glasses. My clear vision followed by an obscuration of meaning? It is as if meaning clicks on and then off to hover as a shadowy uncertainty at the periphery of my, and the storytellers, being: a grey mist before the eyes that not so much obscures meaning, as reminds me of an unravelling of certainty.
Ukonkivi Island, Lake Inari, Arctic Finland – An outcrop of rock, sacred to the god of Thunder and a ritual site for Sami peoples.
Caught in static
Extract - This is how we lived…………..you away from me. In this house, every whisper, smile, thought, laughter and word………it moves, just some little something you found in the corner, hairs, paper, song or a dance.
Extract....here fingers touch too much in places lost and found, they said 2 ways displayed, displaced, this place, this way, no place or even now 2 faced. “Oh disgraced face which direction are you looking”. Well really there is no place to go……..That is what they call it now, “displaced face” looking in many directions this side and that.
Extract - A strange new language hard to understand, not a familiar tongue, mixed with high and low words hard to digest. Words with no destination. Little things coming through the cracks, like clouds separate….lost some place or other, lost with wild dogs. Some place sooner or later, someplace. Somewhere or other?
Out of this place or other. Gone. Going somewhere or other. Never here or there ever.
Not familiar or ever touching or smelling familiar.
Extract - No sunlight, no light, loose, the meadows, trees towering, semi sleep darkness.
…………………….future, past or present. Leave and then retrieve still in another place. Light and sounds, it holds some small things between us, is it an impossible crossing.
The sound of the blue walls, the sound of the house moving in the wind, the sounds of books, candles and electric light, and food cooking, keys and doors. It sounds like: those ever so familiar ticks, creaks, rumbles, hums and the sound of nothing and always that static hum, trapped in static. Then listen to the sound of the bed, fires and the floor. The sound made by windows moving and that terrible rumble in the wind. When darkness covers the house up to the windows and it makes everything sound soft, tiny musical notes, scales, major or minor that just touch us from somewhere, little echoes, rhythms and rhymes. The sound made by the creak of the path that slopes down to the front door. Water. The sound of time, space and light, the echo of an impossible crossing trapped in static, this is like the light upon the wall.
The progressive disassembling of a person.
DH – 16.11.35 - 16.11.2016
• 5th November. The Guardian today reported on an escalation in the destruction of Palestinian homes in the Jordan Valley.
CCFT On-Line Dialogue with Ellada Evangelou of the Home for Cooperation
16th October 2020
MOBILE on a MOBILE
Mike Cooper (musician and artist)
18th October 2020 (Between 1pm and 2pm UK time)
Video: 06 mins 18 secs
MOBILE on a MOBILE
Mike Cooper (musician and artist)
18th October 2020 (Between 1pm and 2pm UK time)
Video: 06 mins 18 secs
SB/JH Stone from the croft wall at Houbansetter, Shetland. Jim’s mother’s family’s croft from 1840’s - deserted since the 1960’s and now a ruin: returning to the landscape from which the rock was extracted.
Set by the waters of the Houbansetter Sound - Houbansetter from the Old Norn, 'hopr setr’ - meaning: 'the summer hill pasture of the lagoon’
We have chosen to call these walks along this stretch of the Kelvin ‘perambulations’ because of the resonances that are to be found in the prefix ‘per’, which Erich Leed considered to be the Indo-European root of the words experience or experiment. We sense, too, a link with the ecclesiastical term peregrini, which denotes one living outside or at the limit: the travelling monks and hermit wanderers. For Leed, ‘per’, should also be understood as ‘to attempt’, ‘to test’, ‘to risk’, while also giving onto the word peril.
… here kids have built temporary camps; layering branches to form basic tee-pees or lean-tos, lighting fires and arranging circles of logs around them: so as to experience, however gesturally, a symbolic nomadism. This is not a nostalgia, nor is it innocence, and in the spell of this moment we recall an artist and art therapist acquaintance, Bill Wylie, who would sit each night drawing in his note books, page after page of biro images. His lines, at times, suggested the tangles of undergrowth that surround us here and these pathways through space, while at others they would resolve into tents or huts that might be the retreats of hermits – or kids. His temporary dwellings were/are informed by a primal intuition that seems to be set in an edge-land, much like Dawsholm, a propositional space or place that hovers uncertainly, while having a truer but difficult and elusive form in our imagination …
I remember John Berger’s words, in conversation with Susan Sontag, about his vision of the birth of language and community, as tales were passed from person to person around an ancient fire-circle: a group sitting, their faces to the fire, their backs to the dark. A kind of origin myth woven on TV in the early1980’s to indicate the importance of the story and of a storytelling that hovers between the light and the dark. A hinterland of thoughts and meanings, where language – what is said or heard within the fire circle – becomes a formative abstraction that drifts outwards from the group to meet the darkness: to be rebirthed in another hinterland where meanings are wilded and confronted with their ‘other’. A realm too where the rat loiters and listens in silence …
Ailsa Craig from the Ayrshire coast road: formed of magmatic pluton, it is reputed to be the half way point on the sea journey between Belfast and Glasgow. It's an uninhabited island that has become a bird sanctuary.
The fabled chieftan, turned bird, turned wanderer, named Sweeney (Shuibhne), is said to have alighted here:
the seagulls' home,
God knows it is
(From 'Sweeney Astray' translated by Seamus Heaney)
This project aims not only to mirror the current situation of Cyprus, but also to understand and recognize through experience the physical and symbolical implications of the border. What is meant to be enacted is a passage that takes place interactively, through a riddle. In order to obtain the full mural, it will be necessary to connect the two walls. Once the image is complete, the visitors will be confronted with a visual maze, waiting to be deciphered.
Video production by Urban Gorillas
Vasilis Vasiliou, street and graffiti artist
Famagusta - Varosha: Visitors to the Beach pausing by the Turkish Military Zone Perimeter Fencing, 2016.
Bruno Latour has, just this year, written that we are ‘attach[ed] to the soil as local’ while being attached through it to the world’. Soil as in, humus, the syllable hu resonating in and with the word human. The physicality of rock strata, dust layers and all manner of rotting material, our own bodies included, all weathered to become earth – a lowercase ‘e’ becoming the uppercase ‘E’ of the Earth. An earth/Earth, despite claims to the contrary that can belong to no one: it’s real or true nature lying beyond our grasp, having been worked, gleaned, manipulated, changed, managed and then parcelled up, owned, abused or controlled.
CCFT On-Line Dialogue with Vasilis Vasiliou, Street/Graffiti Artist, Yiannis Toumazis, Director, NIMAC and Alex Hale, Archaeologist, Edinburgh.
Friday 6th November 2020
Foto Sic (pronounced Shic), North NIcosia.
Window and interior of photoshop that dates back to before the 1974 Invasion, with photographer's images and his accumulated collection of memorabilia. 2019.
MOBILE on a MOBILE
Mike Cooper (musician and artist)
18th October 2020 (Between 1pm and 2pm UK time)
(Video still see Mobility Layer)
On-line Nomadic Dialogue: A possible end ...