Saturday, March 31, 2012

others who possess this urge

Simon likes to record things that do not officially exist, did not happen, and cannot be seen. Others who possess this urge generally write fiction. Simon sets out to photograph the impossible and the forbidden: posing the unjustly convicted at the scene of crimes they never committed for “The Innocents,” her breakout show at MoMA PS1 in 2003; capturing the braille edition of Playboy magazine, the CIA’s art collection, and a repository of nuclear waste in “An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,” her 2007 one-woman show at the Whitney Museum of American Art; and documenting every prohibited ­curiosity, counterfeit handbag, and drug confiscated from passenger luggage at JFK Airport in the space of five sleepless days and nights for “Contraband,” exhibited at Manhattan’s Lever House in 2010. Taryn Simon in W Magazine
Photo of the artist by Rineke Dijkstra for W Magazine

Thursday, March 29, 2012


Everything must not be fussed over. Sometimes a flat-footed sentence is what serves, so you don’t get all writerly: “He opened the door.” There, it’s open. Amy Hempel, the Art of Fiction, No. 176 in the Paris Review
Photo: wall of my studio at Headlands

Friday, March 16, 2012

but at least we try

One is prepared for friendship, not for friends. And sometimes not even for friendship, but at least we try: usually we flail in the darkness, a darkness that`s not foreign to us, a darkness that comes from inside us and meshes with a purely external reality, with the darkness of certain gestures, certain shadows that we once thought were familiar and that in fact are as strange as a dinosaur.

Sometimes that`s what a friend is: the distant shape of a dinosaur crossing a swamp, a dinosaur that we can`t grab or call or warn of anything. Friends are strange: they disappear. They`re very strange: sometimes, after many years, they turn up again and although most have nothing to say to us anymore, some do, and they say it.
Excerpt from "Friends are strange", in Between Parentheses by Roberto BolaƱo. New Directions. 2011.p.135 via Sparks and Kicks

or do i want to be you?

First this:

There is this German word,Lohmaunsheit, which describes a certain ambivalent kind of affection one may feel with particular others, be the acquaintanceship friendly or romantic - do I want to be with you, or do I want to be you? At its core it is the instinct that longs for being an entity, a closed circuit, that recognizes oneself in another but the other, whilst almost entirely alike, also possessing just a fractionmore of something unnamable but undeniably real and really lacking in oneself, just the missing bit to being a complete person. Lohmaunsheit is longing with equal force for both togetherness with and the annihilation of someone, because they are the same. That is fine so far, were it not for the appendix - per definitionLohmaunsheit is always unrequited. It is you as the external me and me knowing that to be true because the feeling is just too strong, yet you just not seeing it, and me knowing that this negates our mirroring on a fundamental level, but that impossibility seeming impossible in itself. That is its inherent tragedy.—Karolina Elyse Watson, Everything

And then this:

you guys. i’m sorry to announce that i made this whole thing up. i made up a german-sounding word and ascribed a random melancholic-pretty definition to it, made up a quote from a made up source by a made up author to describe it. i did it after i saw something similar about an icelandic word on my dash, and i thought to myself, “that’s so cool, even though they could have made that word up, how would i know, but what does that matter”, so i decided to try myself to see what happened. a bunch of likes and reblogs happened but nobody called me out on it and now i feel like a jerk because i’m writing this explanation unasked and because i mean i do think myself that it really doesn’t matter if a word or whatever is “real” or not as long as it resonates with you and gives you something, which incidentally is also what i think about authenticity in pop culture, e.g. lana del rey, so in hindsight it makes no sense that i did this in the first place. the end. From Herzschrittmacher

Photo: Chateau Marmont by Gia Coppola for Lula

Monday, March 12, 2012

angels in america

Act 1, Scene 6

First week of November. In the men’s room in the offices of the Brooklyn Federal Court of Appeals. Louis is crying over the sink. Joe enters.

JOE: Oh, um...Morning.

LOUIS: Good morning, Counselor.

JOE (He watches Louis cry): Sorry, I...I don't know your name.

LOUIS. Don't bother. A word processor. The lowest of the low.

JOE (Holding out hand): Joe Pitt. I'm with Justice Wilson.

LOUIS: Oh, I know that. Counselor Pitt. Chief Clerk.

JOE: Were you...are you OK?

LOUIS: Oh, yeah. Thanks. What a nice man.

JOE: Not so nice.

LOUIS: What?

JOE: Not so nice. Nothing. You sure you’re...

LOUIS: Life sucks shit. Life...just sucks shit.

JOE: What’s wrong.

LOUIS: Run in my nylons.

JOE: Sorry...?

LOUIS: Forget it. Look, thanks for asking.

JOE: Well…

LOUIS: I mean, it really is nice of you.

(He starts crying again)

Sorry. Sick friend…

JOE: Oh, I'm sorry.

LOUIS: Yeah, yeah, well, that’s sweet.

Three of your colleagues have preceded you to this baleful sight and

and you're the first one to ask. The others just opened the door, saw me, and fled. I hope they had to pee real bad.

JOE (Handing him a wad of toilet paper): They just didn't want to intrude.

LOUIS: Hah. Reaganite heartless macho asshole lawyers.

JOE: Oh, that's unfair.

LOUIS: What is? Heartless? Macho? Reaganite? Lawyer?

JOE: I voted for Reagan.

LOUIS: You did?

JOE: Twice.

LOUIS: Twice? Well, oh boy. A Gay Republican.

JOE: Excuse me?

LOUIS: Nothing.

JOE: I'm not...

Forget it.

LOUIS: Republican? Not Republican? Or…

JOE: What?

LOUIS: What?

JOE: Not gay. I'm not gay.

LOUIS: Oh. Sorry.

(Blows his nose loudly) It’s just…

JOE: Yes?

LOUIS: Well, Sometimes you can tell from the way a person sounds that...I mean you sound like a …

JOE: No I don’t. Like what?

LOUIS: Like a Republican.

(Little pause. Joe knows he’s being teased; Louis knows he knows. Joe decides to be a little brave)

JOE (Making sure no one is around): Do I? Sound like a…?

LOUIS: What? Like a…? Republican, or…? Do I?

JOE: Do you what?

LOUIS: Sound like a…?

JOE: Like a…?


Louis: Yes.

My name is Louis. But all my friends call me Louise.

I work in Word Processing. Thanks for the toilet paper.

(Louis offers Joe his hand, Joe reaches, Louis feints and pecks Joe on the cheek, then exits.)

Drawing: Kiki Smith, Silver Bird, 2006 at Brooklyn Museum

Thursday, March 8, 2012

believe in side projects

Believe in side projects. Tattly was a side project; swissmiss was a side project; CreativeMornings was a side project; TeuxDeux was a side project. These are all things that turned into revenue streams for me and made it possible to not have clients. I would never hire anyone who doesn’t have side projects. To me, that shows that someone has ideas, self-initiative, and can make things happen. Tina Roth Eisenberg on The Great Discontent
Photo: Tattly

Sunday, March 4, 2012

a standing ovation

A standing ovation can be extorted from the audience. A gasp cannot. True and False; Heresy and Common Sense for the Actor, David Mamet