My last posts brought about several inspiring reactions, among them two great suggestions.
The animation made several people think of William Kentridge, whose characteristic style is a mix of playfulness and profound reflection, exploring what it means to draw, to create a world, to translate, to travel...
In this video, though, he is less focused on the means of drawing itself, and concentrates on an attempt of putting things back together – or is it, trying to find what was it about them that made them/me this and not that?
The simple, classic time reversal and the retro music combined with the “choreography” make it seem like an old magician’s trick. Indeed, undertaking the attempt of constructing myself seems like an impossible task, one that requires, among others, defying the basic entropy of time. Putting it all together is nothing short of getting the papers to fly right in your hand, dancing in the air as if you had trained them all your life.
Another great discovery is Dibujando un espacio (Drawing a Space), a series of 3 videos by two artists working together, Teresa Solar Abbout and Carlos Fernández-Pello.
At first glance, this is a work about distance and communication, and I must admit that given my personal history, it took me a while to go beyond this reading.
But then, once we get past the metaphor of a long-distance relationship, new layers appear: after all, every relationship is, on some levels, a long-distance relationship. Trying to construct something together is a mad project. Words only get us that far, and the only way of building it together is trying to construct primitive (always primitive) structures that can handle the heterogeneous spaces we bring with us.
Suffice it to say that contemporary analytic philosophy started with the idea that some things are simple enough to constitute a solid basis for communication, and by now, analytic philosophers focus on discussing what they mean by "communication", "constitute", "solid", "basis" and "for".
Both works have a desperation I appreciate and fear. They seem at once hopeless and surprizingly effective. Also thanks to the formal discipline, they become clear pictures of a very unclear, impossible structure, entering right at the point where philosophy struggles.
They share a powerful combination of obsession and self-irony which is both scary and enchanting. Also in art.