Chris Kraus is quoted on Wikipedia, on her collection Video Green
“Collecting in its most primitive form implies a deep belief in the primacy and mystery of the object, as if the object was a wild thing…the object didn’t function best as a blank slate waiting to be written on by curatorial practice and art criticism.”
Here there is a wild tension between object as that which sees strait through us – or we are made naked by it to the point of visual impermanence, through me to it – making me transparent – and the object as a sustenance beyond (our organic dependence on) light, beyond our dependence on a combustion of form to turn out perception.
To state the obvious – we pass through our own body on the way to the unsurpassable object.
The Regenerate Lyric, Elisa New – Wallace Stevens Pg 79 Excerpt. Stevens in Parts of a World would ‘draw the expressive or reflective subject into the object. Romantic affect would be purged in favour of comic effect…the artificer now has no power of expression outside the object. Rather than reflect on experience, mimetically, the Stevensian speaker now becomes the naked object of reflection’
And not just the object of reflection but the thing or perception seen through by the staring object. In this way objects show us our transparency over time – and reflect ourselves back in their eyes as more objects leading to more objects.
Socialising with objects. The well-being of objects.
In the Anglo Saxon fragment ‘Judith’ the premonition of victory in battle reads, “They are doomed – as God showed through my hand!”
I’d like to relate to Anais Nin again on D.H. on his preoccupation with the body, specifically bodies at war.
“What drives him to despair is his very conviction of the sacredness of the body – and war is a monstrous holocaust of innumerable bodies.”
“Lawrence’s language makes a physical impression because he projected his physical response into the thing he observed”
Contrast object-ness to individual assertions and outbursts in Nin’s words:
“Individuality is always bursting forth, always destroying any permanency, as if in suspicion of form”
Suspicion of form is important in my poetry, because it makes the balance between a transparent utterance or voice and the objects that lead it through other objects, that allow it to socialise in the world.
Is this more a criticism of the anthropomorphised mannerisms of the object through which his protagonists seek individual substance – or the assertion of the object-ness permanency of the thing that rejects like a tenant at the end of a lease the impermanent resident? Kafka uses strangers, tourists – anyone without a permanent address or regular job! So the latter, if a little like the former is key here.
In one section of the collection I’d like to convey what its like to be a stranger in a world of things. To resist something in the structure, the deep form of the world and to be watched in the world as light is watched by casting itself about, this way and that, as if trying to free itself from a violent suspicion – to never know the last look in the eye – this is the fate of the individual, while it is also the hope of the social act of resistance – the chance companionship amongst vital objects.