Monday, May 19, 2014

camminando | Geelong Sunrise: Same Place, Different Time

Walking took me today to witness one of the most spectacular rising of the sun. The Corio Bay calm water encouraged the sun-sky/water mirroring, where almost the blues hue were transitioning from the blurring horizon line, where the water meets the sky. I am again trying to find visual altered perception of the backbending panoramas, the top of the photos is the bottom of the place.
Locations range:
-38.144207, 144.363473
-38.129637, 144.356957
Time range:
7:10-9:23 AEST

Chronological sequence ending with a view from above

Vernissages | Kinderhook: Nick Cave at Jack Shainman

The Hudson Valley sleepy town of Kinderhook (Dutch for "kids corner"), NY, woke up to wild art interventions. Thanks to the investments of New York based gallerist Jack Shainman, an old school building in the center of town turned into a minimalist white-box exhibition space, hosting sculptural costumes; the opening event was a performance orchestrated by American artist Nick Cave, who also authored the work on display – not to be confused with the homonymous Australian musician.

exhibitions | Michael Morgan "Impermanent Vessels - Rebirth"

One of the fifty head/vessels. Photo by Michael Morgan
During my daily walk to the Waterfront Campus I encountered Michael Morgan's "Impermanent Vessels - Rebirth" an exhibition important for its content and remarkable for the beautiful multimedia installation. A very unusual dialogue of video projections, sculpture and sound installation (the Muslim Call to Prayer) brings to life the notion of replication of the self (the artist's head) subject to time in space. The two-year project  (2012 to 2014) is a an artist meditation on "the transient and evolutionary nature of all aspects of existence and life."  

More from the artist statement: 
The Story of Vessels
50 copies of the artist's head produced in raku clay, significant through its use in Japanese tea ceremony, were placed in five locations along Corio Bay and Port Philip Bay - Swan Bay, Wedge, Point Lillias, Welsh's Jetty and Point Henry Back Lead. The vessels were subject to nature's forces to transform them through interaction with underwater environment.One year later, the artist began to recover the vessels leaving at least one at each site to symbolize the ultimate return of all things to nature. A total of 38 vessels have been recovered, while others were missing or left to continue their journey.
The Exhibition 
The exhibition presents the recovered vessels and the existence (or non-existence) of the lost vessels by the coordinates of their sites.The small screens rotate the images of vessels at four stages of their evolution: upon production, just as they were placed underwater, then a year after placement underwater, and finally after recovery in their present state.The vessels reflect the unavoidable change in the light of fundamental connectedness of all things as described in Zen Buddhist teachings. Fragile and impermanent- they are also the 'vessels of life' and part of something beautiful. The Muslim Call to Prayer is the spiritual reference to the sound resonating in vessels. A digital projection onto sculpture features the artist wearing hard hat diving equipment with the sound overlay of breathing and heartbeat as the helmet represents the 'vessel sustaining life'.'Impermanent Vessels - Rebirth' is artist's dedication to his late wife Carolyn.
The heads/vessels in the artist's studio. Photo by Michael Morgan
Excerpts from the opening address by Dr. Felicity Spear:
The entire cosmos is a cooperative. Lord Buddha was spot on when he made this observation all those hundreds of years ago, and while contemporary science also finds this to be true, and Michael and I would agree, sadly the politicians who run our lives mostly ignore it. Michael has had enough experience of life to understand something of the nature of this cooperative interconnectedness between things, but also the way things always change, how nothing stays the same,'how everything is in a state of flux. This exhibition Impermanent Vessels- Rebirth could be described as an autobiography in which Michael. through the experience of the tragic loss of his wife Carolyn, attempts to come to terms with the fragility and impermanence of life. His fifty vessels pay homage to the journey he has made in coming to understand the underlying web of connections between all things and their transient nature.Working with his own image, Michael has created what could be described as self portraits, fifty of them, one for each year of his life. He refers to them as vessels of life, fragile, subject to change, impermanent. He draws together the strands of time, memory and transformation in a process which he likens to archaeology, where objects scarred and marked by time are rediscovered, retrieved and rebirthed in another time. The transformative elements in Michaels' work are expressed through the tactile materiality of raku clay, its weathering over time beneath the sea by the flow of water and weed, and the experience of diving in a silent womb-like world.Beneath the sea he returns to an intimate world, connected like an umbilicus to a life line above, hearing only the sound of his own breath and heartbeat, and the flow of water over his body. Retrieving these vessels after a year in their underwater locations enabled their rediscovery, their reinterpretation and their rebirth. They reveal the changes that time has wrought on their surfaces by the process of chance. They are the material evidence for the inevitability of change and its unpredictability.To be an artist takes courage and perseverance. Artists who push the boundaries step outside the mainstream and dare to see the world with other eyes. This can be challenging or fascinating for we cultural consumers depending on what we bring of ourselves to the experience. But for an artist it is not only about courage. It's about a certain sensibility and sensitivity, it's about being attuned to things, and it's about the need to transform experiences into images while drawing attention to different ways of viewing the world. Michael's work raises our awareness of something absolutely fundamental about the cosmos and our own experience. It reminds us that we are more alike than different. We are all in the same boat. He engages with and celebrates the Buddhist observation of the cosmos as a cooperative, the melancholy beauty of the Muslim call to prayer, and the rationality of western science which demystifies the physical world. In doing this he pays respect to cultures other than our own and acknowledges our shared human experiences. This is the legacy of these thoughtful and beautiful vessels as they interact with each other and play with light, our medium of contact with the cosmos. They reflect Michael's courage, his determination and his talent.

Michael Morgan "Impermanent Vessels - Rebirth"
Deakin University Geelong Waterfront Campus
9-25 May 2014

Sunday, May 18, 2014

healing | energising water

Same place, different sunset
I did it! The kind Michael suggested jumping in the cold Eastern Beach water to clear off tensions and worries. I was hesitant, as the sun was about to set shortly, but I rushed back to my room, changed clothes and walked down to the Eastern Beach semicircular boardwalk, which surrounds the swimming enclosure. I laid down a towel, performed a head stand, then took the steel staircase to the water. The extremely cold bay water reminded me of the Atlantic Ocean in the other hemisphere of the planet, namely Cohasset, Massachusetts. I was able to swimming probably no more than 25 meter, then I returned to the boardwalk. While I was drying off I experienced a calming positive energy and was also rewarded with a remarkable view of the green grass lit by the sun setting in an intense grey sky. At the northeast side of the sky a rainbow appeared. I regretted not bringing my phone/camera.

A 2200 meter walk and 24 meter swim

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

camminando | M~M 2014: from Earth to Water and Fire

The second day of the M~M 2014 took to places where the land intersects with water. The 9 km walk on the beach connecting Point Lonsdale to Ocean Grove was particularly challenging, for the walking on wet soft sand. But the views of the Bass Strait were stunning and calming was the sound of the surf. The walk  headed west offering views of the sun setting behind the dunes.


From the Ocean Grove Beach 3 relaxing km of paths took to the final destination: the Barwon Heads River Mouth -the second M of the M to M. In the final ceremony the water from the You Yangs, carried in the canoe was poured into the ocean, and the canoe was set on fire.
The canoe on fire and its disappearing into the water was particularly moving: I have just heard a few hours earlier of the passing of the art curator and friend Rinaldo Funari,who pioneered computer and video art in Italy.
Good bye Rinaldo!